Tiger By The Tail Tool
Secret 43: 8+ Culture
If you’re a giant company, you can afford to spend lots of time and money on employee reviews to mitigate risk, provide HR documentation, and give detailed feedback. But as a business owner you don’t have the resources for all of that. Out of necessity, you need a system that is fast and simple. That’s why I created the 8+ Culture scoring system to help clients evaluate, assess, and measure staff performance quickly and efficiently. It’s a straightforward system based on a simple scale of 1 to 10.
It works because our brains are adapted to take in and process many factors that move us to thousands of different microdecisions daily. We can accurately evaluate people we work with, score them appropriately, and articulate the reasons for that score almost instantaneously.
“Joe is performing at a 7.”
“Judy is performing at 8.5 this week!”
8+ Culture scoring is guided by basic parameters that can be summed up as follows, starting with the topmost score.
Score of 10: You’re outstanding, don’t change a thing. We’d like you to stay and advance your career with us long term.
Score of 8 or 9: You’re excellent. There are only a few minor areas we’d like you to focus on and strive to improve, but overall, you’re a keeper.
Score of 6 or 7: You’re good. There are some areas in your performance that you need to work on. We want you on the team, but need to see some improvement in significant areas that could affect your ability to advance here long term.
Score of 5 or below: You’re fired. (This score warrants firing because poor performers will bring down the scores of others around them.)
When and how should you use 8+ scoring? Follow these
For starters, get together with your team leaders at the end of a week, and simply ask each of them to rate their own performance on the 8+ scale. Absolutely, rate your own as well. This practice session gets people thinking about regular evaluations, as they begin to learn the 8+ Culture scoring system. Remember, this is just an exercise, not a binding review. You are beginning the learning process. Openly discuss the scoring and how people arrived at their scores without judgment.
The next step is for management to start evaluating staff members. Do the managers agree that Joe is a 7 and Judy is an 8.5 this week? Does anyone score a 5 or below? If managers agree that someone is a 4, discuss why and compare opinions. Can the person improve? Are they a mismatch for the company? Is it time to let them go? (Probably).
Next, begin to apply the 8+ Culture standard to hiring. Evaluate applicants by weighing the overall impression of their resumes, professional experience, and job interviews against the 8+ system. Aim high by hiring only the people who appear to be 8+ performers. You may not always get it right, but at least you have a standard and framework against which to measure applicants.
Talk with staff about how using 8+ Culture can become a component of your company’s overall culture. People will come to understand that superior performance is an essential part of your business model.
Everyone has weeks that are below 8, including you. Make it clear to your team that what you’re looking for is an overall performance average. You don’t fire someone for having a week when they were distracted, made mistakes, or lacked focus. Let your staff know that performance can vary, and what counts is a person’s long-term performance over time. The best way to demonstrate this is to share your own below-par scores, as well as your commitment to measuring up to your own best performance.
8+ Culture is a system for building a positive, transparent culture. It’s not a heavy-handed tool. It lets people know that the ideal is to always hire right, help people improve, and keep them long term. Over time, 8+ Culture will become integral to building awareness about high performance at your company.