Behavior-based measures are vital for employee performance evaluations. This type of evaluation is based on how often associates display desired behaviors. The scales usually range from "never" to "always." Managers complete the scale after observing their employees display these desired behaviors. Supervisors create the list of preferred behaviors and meet with their staff to review them prior to implementing the system. Once the evaluation period is complete, managers fill out the scale and discuss the results with their employees.
Safety is an area that is frequently used for behavior-based employee evaluations. Typically, safety involves many skills or behaviors, that must be followed for safety to be effective. Behavior-based measures must be observable skills, and these skills need to be agreed upon by both manager and employee as being important for successful performance. Measures like bending knees while lifting and using a back brace are good examples of behavior-based and observable skills. The more observable a measure is, the more successful it will be.
Behavior-based evaluations are very useful for customer service employees. Observable skills are abundant in customer service occupations. From greeting the customer with a smile to saying "thank you," behavior-based measures are easy to observe. Evaluations begin with observing how frequently customer service agents use these skills, from always to never. Managers may use direct observation or video and DVD reviews. Frequent observation, under varying circumstances, yield the best results for behavior-based evaluation measures. Discuss these measures with employees prior to any evaluation and review your observations often.
Administrative functions are also good opportunities for behavior-based evaluations. Behaviors like greeting clients upon arrival, producing daily reports and preparing announcements are easily observed and reviewed. Be certain that all behaviors are measurable and defined. Behaviors like "displaying a good attitude" are difficult to observe and agree upon. Showing up for work as scheduled and greeting every client are more easily defined and measured. Agree upon the differences between grades in measures. For example, never means zero and not once or twice. These differences are important for the overall evaluation to be useful.
Instructors and facilitators can also be evaluated using behavior-based measures. In the classroom, certain behaviors define a good instructor. Frequent eye contact, using questions to involve students and feedback skills are important for instructor success and are easily measured. Instructors can also be recorded and observed for evaluation and measurement. Observation worksheets are common methods for evaluating instructors and feedback sheets from participants are also useful tools. Reviewing video or DVD results with an instructor can immediately improve performance in the classroom and also any disagreements about how often skills are used.
- "Management of Organizational Behavior"; Paul Hersey, Ken Blanchard;1982
- "Corporate Cultures"; Terrence E.Deal, Allen A.Kennedy; 1982
- "Emotional Intelligence"; Daniel Goleman; 1995
Based in Bethlehem, Pa., Kermit Burley has been writing articles for over 30 years. His articles have appeared in "Training" magazine, as well as numerous company publications throughout the course of his career. Burley holds a Masters of Education in instructional design from Penn State and is certified as a trainer and instructional designer.