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Division of Human Resources


Performance Characteristics

Performance characteristics are qualities, traits, or individual characteristics that are required for satisfactory performance in a particular job, role or team. As a manager, you will need to select the characteristics that best emphasize the qualities that are needed for employees to perform their job duties and objectives successfully. 

General Performance Characteristics

Communication Ability - the effectiveness with which the employee presents accurate information both verbally and in writing.

Relationships with Others - the extent to which the employee establishes positive relationships with co-workers (for example, being a good team worker, being tactful and courteous with co-workers).

Ability to Work Without Supervision - the extent to which the employee can work by himself/herself; requiring very little supervision and is self-sufficient in assuming the duties of the job.

Accuracy of Work - the degree to which the employee makes mistakes or errors that require correction.

Appearance - the physical appearance of the employee at work; cleanliness, grooming, neatness and appropriateness of dress for the job.

Cooperation - the extent to which the employee cooperates with supervisors, associates and those for which work is performed.

Dependability - the extent to which the employee can be relied upon to meet work schedules and fulfill job responsibilities and commitments.

Use of Work Time - how effectively and efficiently the employee uses his/her time to accomplish his/her job tasks (for example, does not wait until the last minute to work on important projects).

Meeting Schedules - the extent to which the employee efficiently completes his/her work and effectively meets deadlines.

Punctuality - the extent to which the employee is prompt in reporting for work and assignments/appointments at the specified time.

Adaptability - the extent to which the employee can adapt to job or organizational changes.

Willingness to Learn - the extent to which the employee wants to learn about his/her job and asks intelligent question about the job.

Safety - the extent to which the employee follows established safety practices and corrects unsafe work practices on the job.

Favorable Job Attitude - the extent to which the employee displays interest and enthusiasm for his/her work and takes pride in a job well done.

Job Knowledge - the extent to which the employee knows the details of the job and follows the job procedures.

Quantity of Work - the extent to which the employee produces an amount of acceptable work in order to meet schedules over which he/she has control.

Quality of Work - the extent to which the employee neatly, thoroughly, and accurately completes job assignments according to established standards of quality.

Attendance - concerns whether the employee is at work each day.

Relationship with the Public - the extent to which the employee establishes good relationships with the public (for example, being courteous and helpful).

Judgment - the quality or work-related decision made by the employee.

Selected Management and Supervisory Performance Characteristics

Planning - the process of making assumptions about the future and gathering facts and opinions to visualize and to achieve the proposed activities. Planning involves; establishing objectives; communicating the objectives; surveying resources; establishing policies, choosing alternatives and taking action; creating procedures and rules; establishing budgets; establishing timetables; and deciding on standards.

Organizing - this refers to the process of arranging people, tasks, and resources in the most orderly and efficient way. Organizing involves: structuring or grouping employees and their activities; assigning specific work to specific groups or individuals; and deciding on the chain of command, span of control and delegation of authority.

Controlling - this essentially involves monitoring the implementation of agreed organizational plans. Controlling involves: establishing standards, measuring performance against these standards, and correcting deviations from standards and plans.

Motivating - a manager motivates by creating an organizational environment or climate in which employees can perform to the best of their ability. Employee motivation is affected by: the work itself, a sense of achievement received from performing the work, recognition received for work performed; the possibility of advancement and growth; and a sense of trust and responsibility.

Developing - this refers to continuous learning and growth for the manager and the employees. Developing involves: continuing education and training to stay abreast of the current state of the art in one's field, making projections based on current trends, determining training needs, and selecting appropriate learning activities.

Promoting Equal Opportunity - includes meeting affirmative action goals in such areas as hiring, promotion; or placement; level of personal and organizational commitment to equal opportunity; progress toward achieving a fully integrated and representative work force; and contribution toward minority programs and other social/economic equal opportunity goals. NOTE: All supervisors and mangers must be rated on this Performance Characteristic if their job duties or responsibilities include or impact any of the following: hiring, promoting, or placing employees, supervising, purchasing or contracting.

Command of Basic Facts - Successful manager have a command of such basic facts as goals and plans (long and short term), product or service knowledge, who's in the organization, the roles and relationship between various departments, their own job, and what's expected of them. If they don't store all this information, they know where to get it when they need it.

Relevant Professional Knowledge - this category includes technical knowledge, for example, technology relevant to results required; constituency building techniques; engineering knowledge; relevant legislation; sources of finance; and knowledge of basic management principles and theories such as planning, organizing, and controlling.

Continuing Sensitivity to Events - Managers vary in the degree to which they can sense what is happening in a particular situation. Successful managers are relatively sensitive to events and can tune in to what's going on around them. They are perceptive and open to information - "hard" information, such as figures and facts, and "soft" information, such as the feelings of other people. Managers with this sensitivity are able to respond appropriately to situations as they arise.

Analytical, Problem-solving and Decision/Judgment-making Skills - the manager is concerned with making decision. Sometimes these can be made using simple logic. Other decision call for the ability to weight pros and cons in what is basically a very uncertain or ambiguous situation, calling for a high level of judgment or even intuition. The manager must therefore develop judgment-making skills, including the ability to cope with ambiguity and uncertainty, striking a balance between the necessity at times to be guided by subjective feelings without ignoring objective logic.

Social Skills and Abilities - one definition of management often cited is "getting things done through other people." This definition may be inadequate, but it does point to one of the key features of the manager's job - it requires interpersonal skills. The successful manager develops a range of abilities that are essential in such activities: communicating, delegating, negotiating, resolving conflict, persuasion selling, using and responding to authority.

Personal Resilience - the manager's job involves a degree of emotional stress and strain, which arises as a natural consequence of working situations involving authority, leadership, power, interpersonal conflict, meeting targets and deadlines, all within a framework of some uncertainty and ambiguity. Successful managers must cope with this. Resilient means that they feel the stress, (they don't become thick-skinned and insensitive but are able to cope with it by maintaining self-control and by giving to some extent.

Creativity - the ability to come up with unique new responses to situations, and to have the breadth of insight to recognize and to use practical new approaches. It involves not only having new ideas, but also having the ability to recognize a good idea when it comes from someone else.