I don’t know how many of my clients, big or small, get hung up on their job descriptions when they are recruiting or restructuring. In my view managers treat potential employees as being dumb, they feel they have to spell everything out about the position and then wonder why the responses to job adverts are dismal or the restructuring process is complicated. The truth of the matter is managers and executives need to focus only on where the buck stops with each role in the business once that has been figured out the accountabilities can be identified, the structure created and the measures of success clarified. This can be done by creating a simple but very powerful job balance scorecard for every role in the company.
5Key Elements to any Job Balance Scorecard
- The purpose of the role, why does it exist.
- The roles the position directly or indirectly influences
- The key accountabilities for that role, these are areas where the buck stops here.
- The outcomes to those accountabilities. This is the measurable part of the job balance scorecard that allows the person in the role to understand whether they are successful or not.
- The purpose (derived from the Hedgehog Concept by Jim Collins)and core values of the business, (when using it as a recruiting tool)
Job Balance Scorecard as Recruitment Tool
When it comes to interview time, the candidate receives a copy of the job balance score card ahead of the interview and that becomes the main topic of conversation. The questions asked of the candidate are there to find out whether that can step up and meet those accountabilities as well as demonstrate that they can live up to the values and are excited by the company’s purpose. You get this right you will already have a highly engaged and motivated member of the team.
Job Balance Scorecard as a Performance Tool
The job balance score card is a live document, the outcomes should be tracked in real time, allowing the person in the role to understand whether or not they are having a good day or not. When outcomes look like they are about to be missed, corrective action or training and development can be given immediately, giving the person in the role that best chance at success. With this happening in real time, there would be no need for performance reviews (in the traditional sense) as these would be done in real time. Wouldn’t it be much better to sit down once or twice a year and have a conversation about which areas to develop next rather than a how have you performed over the last 6 months?
Job Balance Scorecard as an Alignment Tool
The biggest difference between a job balance scorecard and a job description is one is fluid and the other is static. Job balance scorecards are fluid documents that move with the needs of the business and will keep each role in the business aligned with what the role needs to achieve from an operations (day to day) perspective but also from a strategic perspective. Each job balance scorecard should be aligned with the company’s annual and even quarterly priorities with key accountabilities updated as required to ensure alignment. Isn’t that an interesting concept where each role in the business is actually aligned with where the company is going rather than that being driven by a couple of senior managers?
Job Balance Scorecard as an Engagement Tool
Each accountability in a job balance scorecard has an outcome, each outcome is a measure, when you have measures you can create dashboards or scoreboards and it is these that will drive a different level of engagement with everyone in the company.