ABC's of Leadership Behaviors and HR Roles

Assess your own skill levels and training needs on these Federal guidelines and standards of conduct for great managers and leaders.

Novice:  Low experience or skill
Skilled:  Moderate experience or skill
Expert:  Lots of experience or skill and still striving for improvement

Clusters of Leadership and Management

Note:  All tree elements in each cluster are necessary for effective management.

1.  Managing Others' Performance

a) Focus on expected or required behavior and specific results or outcomes.

b) Listen and respond appropriately to communicated needs, problems, obstacles, or issues in delegated assignments.

c) Encourage active participation and maintaining the self-esteem of others and demonstrating mutual respect.

2.  Communicating Expectations

a) Explain tasks and defining specific expectations in clear and measurable terms (can see it, describe it, do it).

b) Ask for employee viewpoints about the time and task issues and agreeing on commitments.

c) Confirm mutual understanding about objectives and checking - "Is there anything we left out?"

3.  Assessing Employee Performance: Frequent Review

a) Ask the employee for their own assessment of their performance on expected tasks and timelines.

b) Assist with problems, resources, issues, and pinpointing things that can lead to improvement.

c) Obtain involvement and commitment to training and development goals which will enhance performance value.

4.  Coaching and Training

a) Observe and analyze performance to suggest better ways to do things.

b) Identify specific learning problems and teach new techniques, with spot checks to reinforce improvements.

c) Demonstrate a task or skill according to the employee's preferred learning style (ask them!) and have them perform it so you can coach them on gaps in performance.

5.  Handling Employee Conflicts or Pinches

a) Listen actively then gather facts, feelings, and other points of view.

b) Remain objective and focus on points of agreement while guiding others to possible solutions.

c) Collect data, resolve points of conflict, and use strategic thinking skills.

6.  Implementing Changes

a) Involve people in pre-change thinking, gathering input, and keeping people informed throughout the change cycle.

b) Encourage questions while presenting the change positively and emphasizing improvements evolving from the change over time.

c) Anticipate problems and take action to prevent or mitigate any consequences that are detrimental. (proactivity)

7.  Discipline and Corrective Action

a) State any problem clearly and positively.  Acknowledge efforts to meet standards.  Be sensitive to their fears.

b) Cite good examples and get agreement from the employee about the need for improvement(s).

c) Ask for proposed solutions and describing expected new behavior or levels of performance with a positive expectation that the employee can improve.  Be clear about consequences.

8.  Termination of an Employee (Be kind and do not rehash performance issues)

a) Research the performance history to ensure fairness and ensure you have followed written policies and procedures.

b) Rehearse the termination meeting with your Manager, a peer and/or HR to ensure you are comfortable relaying necessary information and next steps.

c) Focus the interview on the future needs and actions that will result (final pay, transfer of retirement funds, transition etc.)  Offer resignation option whenever possible.