Resuming my overview of ISPI’s performance standards, the focus of this post is cause analysis.  According to ISPI, “some causes are obvious, such as new hires [who] lack the required skills to do the expected task.”  Training should be a part of the solution for onboarding new hires.  However, one should not always assume training will resolve every need a new hire or any other employee has.

What is implied in the quote above, but not explicitly stated, is the fact the underperformance can be caused by factors that are not fully resolved through training.   These can include organizational priorities, lack of access to resources or individuals, inadequate or defective tools, poor morale, ineffective incentives, or ill-defined processes.

Settling on a solution because it seems right or because it is the way you have always done things is a common mistake.  I encourage you to look beyond the obvious and explore what else could be causing a performance problem.  This may take some effort and will definitely be challenging but you will be well on your way to coming up with a solution that will actually improve performance.

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