Transforming good performers into great performers doesn’t have to be complicated.


Forbes contributor and leadership coach Mark Murphy argues you can double the number of star employees at your organisation by transforming middle performers into high performers. Murphy believes the vast majority of middle performers have more than enough talent to become high performers. The problem, it seems, is a lack of self-belief in managers. In a survey Murphy conducted, only a quarter of leaders surveyed believed they had the skills to develop middle performers. The good news, however, is that developing middle performers is easier than people think:

Pinpoint three-to-five attributes that differentiate high from middle performers. 

Are high performers more proactive than middle performers? Better team players? 

More empathic? It doesn't matter what those characteristics are, according to Murphy.

Second, take one of those characteristics and identify specific behaviours that would indicate great work versus behaviours that would be good work. 

An example could be that the best people in your organisation embrace change, while middle performers merely tolerate it.

Conduct a one-on-one conversation with each middle performer and say something like: 'You're doing really good work. 

I'm deeply appreciative of what you do, but I believe you've got tremendous potential to turn that good work into great work. 

Would you be open to me sharing some of the differences between good and great work?'

With that complimentary opening, managers are now free to share with the employee different ways to transform that employee into a high performer. It may even boost the employee's self-esteem and confidence.





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