Assessment for development

Fear is an incapacitating force. There are many occasions when companies tackle certain projects with too many precautions, with fear, and that is why they do not succeed in developing their maximum potential. The key to the success of implementing a mixed objective and competency assessment model is precisely the courage of a company that wants to work with maximum transparency.

Objective: To establish a mixed objective and competency assessment model that enables a company with strong international growth to identify and develop internal talent.

Project: A 70/20/10 assessment model is created with a significant weight corresponding to the qualitative competency development part and an ad hoc design for the sector and the company type.

Outcome: Following the success of a pilot project conducted in Spain, the second stage is being carried out, where the system is being implemented in the other markets where the company operates in Europe, Latin America and the USA.
It is very common for a performance assessment model to focus on competencies or on objectives, but a mixture of both is more difficult to find. In order to design and start up a project of this calibre, the company has to be firmly committed to team development and to a transparency-based leadership model.

This hotel sector firm’s catchphrase when tackling this model’s design was very clear: “zero fear” when it comes to addressing challenges, adopting innovations, raising doubts and growing from them. This attitude was pivotal to achieving success in an ambitious project and enabled its design to be tailored to its needs, considering the keys to performance in its sector and the talent map needed to cover very fast internationalisation.

Defining the objectives

In a project of this magnitude, clearly defining the business needs the model has to meet is crucial:

Identifying talent: very fast growth, both national and international, requires having a team with a reserve to be able to fill newly-created positions, especially in the opening of new facilities;
Developing this talent: the model has to be applied right from the selection process to the training in order to continue feeding the most important positions and to provide a career for the best employees;
Innovative culture: The company retains a marked personality, both internally and in its customer service line; with respect to the team, maintaining this innovation means not penalising mistakes and basing its decisions on transparency and measurement as a form of on-going development.

The model was started up in three steps:

Preliminary analysis: based on an in-depth survey of the Company’s current assessment system, culture and values. Following this work:

  • The decision was taken to create a mixed model that includes objectives and competencies. The team’s bonus is established according to both criteria. One of the main objectives is to create an intuitive, simple model, which is objective and transparent, and can be applied in all the countries where the chain operates.
  • The objectives include both the company’s general objectives and the specific objectives of the hotel or business unit.
  • The competency model is adapted to the sector and to each position, so that the job is supplemented with a definition of ideal profiles; one of the main aspects is the qualitative part of the competencies which is elaborated through aptitudes, not numbers: “I improve”, “I do”, “I impact”, etc., which are able to encourage the staff to develop and climb up the corporate ladder.
  • The protagonist in the process is the participant, never the consultant. This point lays the groundwork for the information gathering model, feedback meetings and the development plan.
  • The development model chosen is 70/20/10, where 70% of development depends on oneself, 20% corresponds to the direct supervisor and 10 % is left in the hands of the HR Department.

Communication: One of the project’s basic keys is the involvement of all the company’s employees and, to this end, it is absolutely necessary for communication to be structured and planned and include clear objectives and transparent rules.

Training: A training plan is designed and implemented involving all the employees, both employees who have a dual role (participant and consultant) and employees who are only participants.

The project was successfully developed as a pilot test in Spain and its internationalisation stage is currently underway. It is going to be translated into several languages and will be applied in all the markets where the company operates in Europe, Latin America and the USA.

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