What you will study
Often when people refer to performance, they really mean 'high performance' in relation to organisations, teams and individuals. In the competitive context of the private sector, those that perform best are considered to have a competitive advantage, a stronger market share or be more profitable. In the public and not-for-profit sectors, performance is more often talked about in terms of efficiencies and sound governance. Increasingly there is a blurring of the lines as in both cases, issues such as reputation, social responsibility and integrity cut across sectors and are areas which impact upon morale, customer satisfaction and the bottom line.
Performance covers not only what is achieved but how it is achieved. There are both formal systems and processes that support performance and informal ones. Managing performance is partly about a process of planning, organising, and setting direction but also monitoring and measuring results.
The course covers elements of setting objectives and providing direction and targets for performance as well as keeping people on track to achieve and succeed. This includes the use of formal and informal feedback and other support skills.
Managing people means performance can fluctuate for many different reasons. Some of these are about individuals; their personal motivation, competence, health and wellbeing over time. Some variations may be more to do with the nature of work itself. Yet another aspect of performance management is dealing with the variation in performance between people in the same team. All this means that for you to be an effective manager you will have to be adept at selecting appropriate strategies and using a variety of skills. There are tips for dealing with difficult situations and practical exercises that you will be able to use immediately in your own work context.
As a result of studying the course you will have been introduced to some best practice, tools and techniques and you will be encouraged to compare and contrast these to your own organisation.
Although the course is not formally assessed, the activities within it, and the feedback provided for these, build towards your own performance development plan. On completion of the course we hope you will have reflected on your own practice as a manager, taken on board some new ideas and knowledge and put in place some objectives for your ongoing development. Most of all the course content and skills are likely to improve your own performance and therefore that of your organisation.
The strong link between course learning and your work practice creates relevant, enduring and transferable outcomes. It requires no more than 25 hours of your time in total, over whatever period suits you. Register online today and start tomorrow – no need to wait!
The course features the distinctive strengths of The Open University (OU) from its years of expertise in work-based learning:
- The convenience of accessing its clearly presented and sequenced materials, activities and support whenever suits you and wherever you have access to the dedicated website – if you prefer, you can print key materials to work on them offline.
- The support of an expert learning adviser who can clarify study materials, answer questions and help you relate the course to your specific needs.
- A work-based activity helping you to connect the course to your individual and organisational context and needs. A learning adviser will review your work-based activity and provide personal feedback.
- Certification of completion from the OU for those who complete the course. You can use this to demonstrate your continuing professional development (CPD) activity to your employer and/or professional body. (NB the course does not carry academic credit points.)
You will learn
After completing this course you should be able to:
- describe the foundations and elements of organisational performance and its role in your organisation
- identify the ways in which individual performance objectives need to align with organisational performance objectives
- recognise your own impact as a manager on your teams performance
- set meaningful objectives, standards and expectations that encourage employee achievement
- recognise the causes of individual fluctuations in performance
- draw on a variety of tools and techniques to manage a range of performance issues.
Successful completion of the course enables us to recognise your achievement of the course learning by issuing an OU certificate that you can use to document your commitment to continuing professional development in your personal portfolio, or to provide evidence to employers or professional body.
Expert, confidential learner support is available when you need it from a learning adviser, who will respond to you direct within 24 hours. Other support is available via the course forum, library, StudentHome website and computing helpdesk.