We believe that a solution that encompasses our five pillars (goals, tasks, results, recognising success, and managing failure) as well as maintaining communication throughout this process, will will offer your business the best strategy for success. However, you might feel that you have your goals, tasks and recognition in the bag, but are not quite sure how to approach underperformance. We can help.
Names for ‘failure’
One person’s failure is another person’s underachievement. At *sparkfolios we use the term ‘failure’ to refer to a negative outcome following an examination of the results of a project, task or goal, but we understand that your business might prefer the term progress, victory etc. Our client-centered approach means that we will tailor our products to suit your needs and your terminology!
Why focus on failure?
We are taught from a young age that making mistakes is bad, and if you have a look at most performance and incentive management companies and/or programmes, you won’t see anything about a poor or lack of performance. So why do we focus on failure? *sparkfolios is not scared to address this most important aspect of business, because it is a part of business and most successes come from one or two projects that didn’t work – that’s how we learn and improve and eventually succeed. One of the most important things a business can do is to neither avoid or embrace failure, but manage it.
How to manage failure
First, acknowledge that failure is a possibility (or even part of the process) and put plans in place to keep an eye out for when things take a negative turn; and know when to stop a non-profitable project, even if it’s your passion. It’s important to own the failure and not make excuses, lay blame or find a scapegoat. This is a natural reaction, but doesn’t lead to a positive outcome. It’s also important to apologize to those who have been affected by the problem, for example to customers when a mistake occurred. Giving a personal touch and apologising for what actually occurred will go much further than a generic “we apologise for the inconvenience caused”. Then, forgive yourself and learn from what happened. Performing a retrospective investigation can help to identify what went wrong which can inform a future direction.
How we can help…
Just by acknowledging and managing failure you are taking steps toward success and *sparkfolios can assist you on that path. Being aware of the early signs of a potential negative outcome allows you to change direction and adjust accordingly and our software will alert you to tasks and goals not being met through the objectively measurable results and feedback you will receive with any of our performance management modules. However, once we’ve given you the hard facts, we will also assist you in what to do next, by providing you with the steps for performance counselling of employees under review, and keeping track of where they are in the process. We will also offer you tools to motivate your staff to avoid further failure and get them back on the track to success.