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Finding Balance in Performance Management

Tips to Manage Life Stress and Work Success

Achieving a balance between work and home before 2020 was a process of juggling and prioritizing responsibilities between the two. Now, more than perhaps any other time in U.S. history, employees are facing new challenges because the office, in many cases, is also home. COVID-19 has put many individuals and families in the midst of finding the perfect balance between virtual school and hybrid education options, along with juggling childcare needs with work schedules and personal time.

LightWork® Software sponsored the “The State of Performance Management 2020,” a survey conducted by, in May and June of 2020. More than 300 human resource professionals who are primarily based in the U.S. responded, providing insights into employee performance management trends, practices, and technologies. According to the survey, COVID-19 is not only disrupting organizations but also disrupting the personal lives of their employees. Eighty-five percent said that the COVID-19 crisis has somehow changed performance management in their organization. 

Because external stressors can have an impact on an employee’s performance, it is encouraging to see that 40% of those surveyed said more performance management-related conversations involve the health and well-being of their employees, rather than just performance. For larger companies, 73 percent of their performance conversations are happening remotely, rather than face-to-face.

Mastering this balancing act doesn’t require a mastery of a new set of skills, but it does take planning and establishing expectations. Once accomplished, this can reduce frustration and set your employees on pathways to improved engagement and performance.  

Here are ways to navigate these new circumstances surrounding work-life balance. 

When having conversations with your managers, remember to discuss how they can adjust their conversations with their teams and individuals to help everyone find the right balance in this not-so-predictable year we are all experiencing.

Separation between work and family is extremely important. Work can get hectic and sometimes it can even start to take over your home life. While telecommuting and flexible work schedules have been gaining popularity and acceptance over the last decade, many organizations and employees do not know how to fully manage it.  

Be sure your managers set expectations with their employees for when the workday begins and also when it ends. Or, for some employees, performance goals and objectives may have nothing to do with a traditional workday schedule. When employees worked in an office, their commute into work started their day and the commute home ended it. So, there was a clear boundary. Sure, being connected to the office through mobile devices can blur the lines, however, organizations should have established expectations for accessibility and response. Be sure employees understand when they are and are not expected to be available.  

One recommendation is to set up an end of day routine that can be the ‘new commute.’ Powering down devices, and leaving the room they use as an office creates a transition to the rest of their day and personal time. Another suggestion is to step outside at the end of each day, or take a walk around the block to ‘commute’ from work time to downtime. Anything that creates and separates the work activities of the day from the rest of the day can be a good solution. 

Another finding of the “State of Performance Management 2020” was that organizations that achieve performance management goals to a high degree are more likely to adapt their performance management practices in response to COVID-19 challenges. These organizations also see improved employee performance, development, and engagement due to more frequent information and performance-related conversations with employees.  

These high-performing organizations also use technology to support their performance management process. Software solutions, such as LightWork Performance Management, offer easy ways for managers to create and link tasks to goals and objectives, document conversations, and receive and document feedback. It provides organizations the capability to track, analyze, and evaluate, goal setting, career development, and productivity. To learn more, visit


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