Introduction to Performance Management In The Public Service


Kenneth Blanchard a – the Leadership Guru with others In the book ” the one minute manager builds high Performing Teams: Increase satisfaction and productivity to achieve excellence”, Published 2000.The Co-authors coined an acronym PERFORM. Where each letter stands for:

P- Purpose and Values


R-Relationships and communications


O-optimal performance

R-Recognition and Appreciation


The co-authors describe the above as the Characteristics of high performing teams.


Theoretic Framework for Performance Management



This is when an employee accomplishes duties and produces an outcome a specified job or activity or task during a specific time.

Performance Management

  1. This is the total system of gathering information on performance, Reviewing/evaluating performance against the set standards, providing feedback to the individual employees, Storing information to improve institutional effectiveness, Storing information to improve institutional effectiveness.
  2. To Introduce and manage a systematic process for improving organizational performance by developing the performance of individuals and teams.
  3. Human Resource Management is a managerial function that ensures the organization jobs are filled with the right people all the time.  The generic HRM functions are Recruitment and Selection, Training and Development (Planned Progression, Job Rotation, Formal Programs – on job training or off job training, short-term and long-term etc), Performance and productivity management, Employee Relations, Occupational Health ,Safety and Welfare and Separation (Dismissal, Resignation, death and Retirement).

Purposes of Performance Management

  • Obtain better results from the organization, teams and individuals by understanding and managing performance within an agreed framework of planned goals, standards and competency requirements.
  • Establish shared understanding of what is to be achieved. Manage and develop people in a way that ensures that it will be achieved.
  • Align individual objectives to organizational objectives and ensure that individuals uphold corporate core values.
  • Act as a lever for change.

Diagram: Characteristics of Performance Management



Diagram: Performance Management Processes


The Seven Questions for Performance Management

  1. What do we mean by performance?
  2. How can we identify good or poor performance?
  3. How can we establish the cause of good or poor performance?
  4. How can we motivate people to perform well?
  5. How do we deal with underperformers?
  6. How can we do all this fairly and consistently?
  7. How do we achieve commitment from all the stakeholders?

The Incidence and the Features in Performance Management

  • Performance review
  • Objective setting
  • Performance Management covers all jobs
  • Personal development plans
  • Performance improvement plans
  • Performance Management in place for more than 5 years
  • 360-degree
  • Competence
  • Web

 Tool: How to Introducing Performance Management


Tool: How to Manage High Performing Organizations


Application Framework for Performance Management


Performance Management

The Public Service Commission of Kenya (PSC-K) in 2006 publication – “Human Resource Audit Manual”. (PSC-K) lists Performance management (PM) including Performance appraisal as a function of HRM. The other functions of HRM are Human Resource Information Systems (HRIS), Recruitment and selection, Training and development, Succession management, Harmonizing skills and functions, Human resource planning, Employee relations, Employee communication and counseling, Salary administration Management of change Compensation and benefits.

Performance Management: Economic policies and Implementation methodologies

Performance Management in the Public Service is anchored in the National Economic Blue Prints. The current is Kenya Vision 2030 and the proceeding was known as Economic Recovery Strategy (ERS) for Wealth creation and Employment. ERS was implemented from 2003 to 2007 by the Coalition Government of the Political Party NARC that dislodged from political power after 4O years by KANU. Kenya Vision 2030 will be implemented in 5-years phases. We are in first phase 2008-2012.

 Result-Based Management

Result-Based Management (RBM) is the foundation of Performance management in the public service. RBM is defined as a participatory team based approach designed to achieve defined results by improving programme and management efficiency, effectiveness, accountability and transparency. (RBM Guide, Kenya 2005).

The RBM policy framework in Kenya is based on principles derived from benchmarking with the Canadian and Swedish RBM models.  Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA). CIDA defined RBM as “design to improve management effectiveness and accountability by involving key stakeholders in refining realistic expected results, assessing and monitoring progress towards achievement of expected results, integrating lessons learned into management decisions and reporting on performance”. (CIDA 1996).

The three Levels of Results for are Outputs (Deliverables), Outcomes (Effects) and Impact. This is presented as a result chain. See the diagram below.

Result-Based Management: implementation methodologies – RRI, P.C. and PAS

Rapid Results Initiative (RRI), Performance Contracting (P.C.) and Performance Appraisal System (PAS) provide a structured methodology for building and practicing Results Based Management (RBM). This methodology was required for successful implementation of the Economic Recovery Strategy for Wealth Creation and Employment (ERS) by the Public Service. It is also required now us we implement the Kenya Vision 2030.

RRI or Rapid Results Approach (RRA) is a results-focused learning process aimed at jump-starting major change efforts and enhancing implementation capacity. RRI tackles large-scale medium and long term change efforts through a series of small-scale, results-producing and momentum-building initiatives. It the power behind the approach is that stimulates “group adrenalin” which is vital in overcoming inertia – in 100 days!

Performance Contracting is a management tool for ensuring accountability for results by public officials, because it measures the extent to which targeted results are achieved. After 12 months since the Public official signed the negotiated agreement.


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4 thoughts on “Introduction to Performance Management In The Public Service

  1. Dan Musungu - February 2, 2012 at 2:02 pm

    …. part of what I would like to discuss with you is the old story of whether leaders are born or made! You have never stopped to amaze me with the way you have always raised the bar for us. You have always kept us guessing. Look at this initiative, you know better than I do that you are the first to have a website …

    Far from that, I like the way Kenneth Blanchard defined his acronym PERFORM. Am especially keen on O – Optimal performance. I have been agonising since the beginning of the year how to increase the performance of my salesmen. For sometime now I have been wondering whether it is possible to have a team where every member is performing to the expectation or it is normal to always keep a black sheet in the team. Please more material on this subject. I am impressed with the work.

  2. Gabriel Lubale - February 3, 2012 at 11:59 am

    Dear Nephew Dan. When I launched my website you are among the first people I smsed the URL. I’m honored to mention the names of other reviewers of the website: Temesi Munyendo and Peter Mukasa. Of course the Web Designer and Developer Kevin Mukhwana.
    I appreciate and accept the compliments with humility.
    About the theme whether leaders are born or made. I will supplement on the discourse that a leader can born or / and a leaders can be made. Sure, the leader requires nurturing. However the ultimate measure of the leader is number of followers now and the legacy. Now, I want to cite Martin Luther King Jnr “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”. Leaders should provide solutions to the people.

  3. Humphrey Gibbs Magorimbo - March 9, 2015 at 8:14 pm

    What an eye opener to the new management concept and educative? What is the impact of Result Based Management system on employee development

  4. Lindi Khanjila - October 5, 2015 at 7:52 am

    Thank you for the insight on performance management and the processes involved. I work in an institution where i think we have a “not so clear” relation between vision,mission and performance management. How do we or rather I bring it down to the people i supervise so that we can breath and leave the vision and mission?


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