Achieve Model of Performance and Leadership Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

The ACHIEVE Model of performance management is based on the dual importance of skills and motivation on the one hand, and the necessity for feedback and validity on the other. Therefore, the ACHIEVE model takes into account employee characteristics as well as organizational features. Hersey and Goldsmith, developers of the ACHIEVE model, further identified the seven components critical to effective performance management, including ability, understanding, organizational support, motivation, performance feedback, validity, and environment (p. 65). These factors show how the ACHIEVE model is based on the concept of interdependence and interactivity between employees and the organization. The organization needs to offer feedback and opportunity to employees, who in turn contribute their own capacity and skills to reaching goals. The ACHIEVE acronym helps to simplify the model, helping leaders to quickly make assessments and changes to their performance management strategies. The acronym stands for Ability, Clarity, Help, Incentive, Evaluation, Validity, and Environment. Each factor in the ACHIEVE model can be adapted to suit any workplace situation. If there is a known issue or impediment to performance, managers can assess the situation according to these seven main variables.

My supervisor has used all of the elements of the ACHIEVE model at one point or another. The elements most commonly used include Achieve and Help. Achieve variables pertain to the past achievements made by the individual—or even by an entire workgroup. Past performance, milestones, or successes are part of the achieve variable. Achieve variables are usually going to be skills specific to any given task, or at least to transferable skills that have been honed over time. When choosing members of a team, my supervisor usually pays close attention to the individual’s past experience and prior successes, or at least their training or educational background. Any time the supervisor believes a person may be lacking in task-specific skills, he will consult with his own supervisors to request funding for training programs or mentoring.

Likewise, the use of the Help variable requires organizational support for the performance improvement of any individual employee. The employee needs to know what help is available, who to ask, and how to obtain that assistance in any given situation. Therefore, help is inextricably linked to clarity. Help is ultimately something that must be formalized, so that employees actually do have the tangible services and support they need to succeed. Because my organization does have these formal pathways for help and assistance, organizational support is considered a major factor in performance management within the organization. Our supervisor is continually reminding us of what help is needed, what help is available, and how to obtain it in a timely manner. The organization also offers employees options for training, learning, and mentoring. If there is a lack of organizational support in a specific performance management area, then the supervisor will consult with management and relay the difficulties in providing employees with the necessary help they need.

Trait approaches to leadership show how some supervisors become instrumental leaders in the organization, and can also be used to train employees with high potential to develop the traits they need to succeed as leaders. While trait theories are not infallible, they do demonstrate the most valuable and evidence-based personality variables that enhance communication, critical thinking, and other factors crucial for leadership success. Trait theories therefore go beyond personality characteristics and take into account skills that can be learned or perfected, such as people skills. There are several different models of trait leadership theory, one of which is Bennis’s seven characteristics of effective performance (p. 72). These seven characteristics include business literacy, people skills, conceptual skills, track record, taste, judgment, and character. A great leader will demonstrate all of these traits to a strong degree, and developing leaders may need to recognize their points of weakness and improve them without detracting from core strengths.

Of the seven characteristics, my greatest strength is character. Even when I lack a full understanding of the situation or am struggling to communicate my ideas, I act with integrity and honesty. Other people do seem to recognize strong character…

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