Mind The Gap – Performance Gap, That Is…

Written by on March 1, 2016 in Change, Personal Productivity, Training with 0 Comments

Mind The Performance Gap“Mind the Gap” is a phrase that originated in 1969 on the London Underground. It’s an audible or visual warning phrase issued to rail passengers to take caution when crossing the spatial gap between the train door and the station platform. Today, the phrase used in many ways to urge caution.

In this article let’s talk about Performance Gaps. Performance gaps are the differences between the present state of a business operations and its ultimate performance. The “Gap” is measured in terms of employee productivity and skills, business performance or industry benchmarks.

One area where we “mind the gap” is in developing training for our employees and new hires. Technology has changed the roles and skills needed of employees in the organization and the gap is widening. We can no longer use benchmarks of past performance to guide staff and training development.

Instead, we need to look to the future and the anticipated business changes for the next 3 to 5 years for our strategy.

technologyFor example, it’s not enough to only provide training to our employees for their current positions. We need to be training our employees so they are prepared for their next role or promotion. Skills that were once taught only to managers now need to be taught to those on the path to management. This results in a change of language within the organization from “deficits” to “opportunities.”

As the organization changes and grows, so do the needs of employees. Training must become more individualized as it moves away from the one-size-fits all model. Today’s learning tools make it easier than ever to meet the needs of the employee and the organization, reducing performance gaps and becoming more strategic.

Here are some Best Practices to use when Minding the Gap:

1. Work closely with managers and functional leaders to understand why the gaps exist. Ask questions to determine if it’s a new skill or one they used to know but no longer use.

2. Identify your best skill performers and watch what they do. How do they perform differently from others in the same role? Ask them questions and build your training around what you have learned.

3. Look to other organizations to see if they have experienced these same gaps and how they approached the learning. These benchmarks are a valuable way to learn how to improve your organization’s performance.

4. Once you have determined a learning path, take the time to pilot the program before rolling it out to the entire organization. Learn from your experience and tweak your training programs for success.

Mind The Gap

FutureMind the gap is more than a phrase, it’s a warning that the future brings changes and that the organizations that are prepared will have a better chance of surviving in the marketplace. How will you mind the gap?

If you need help in performance gap analysis or figuring out how to Mind The Gap in your organization, let me know. I’m here to help.

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