Saturday, December 21, 2013

Performance: Organizational Citizenship Behavior

In the last byte, we began our discussion on performance management and identified the various stages in it. In today's byte, we look at how do we define performance and set the stage for other stages in performance management.

It is very clear from the discussion thus far that employees need to understand their performance expectations very clearly to perform well at work. This process of getting the expectations understood falls under the performance definition stage. Expectations about an individual's performance will not be on any single dimension, but would be on multi-dimensions - these could include not just the task specific skill but others like interpersonal skills, administrative and finance skills etc depending on the stage at which one is in the career growth.

Let’s take for example - an individual doctor working in a hospital. In addition to knowing the necessary diagnostic and treatment skills, he/she would be expected to have good interpersonal skills (presented as bed-side manners) to enhance the healing process of a patient. Extending this to other professions, we can clearly see that each specific job in an organization requires its own definition of skills and behaviors essential for excellent performance.

It would be interesting to remind the readers here of the discussion we had on organizational citizenship behavior (OCB). OCB is a sought after dimension of individual performance that pans across jobs. It involves individual discretionary behavior that promotes the organization and is not explicitly rewarded! This is an important dimension of expectations that organizations look for and hence worth mentioning here.

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