Why Leadership Must be Engaged When Evaluating and Training Employees

Peter Robustelli Blog

We have probably all been there at some point in our professional careers — the nearly always dreaded performance evaluation and review with “the Boss.” Rarely are these done well, and there is almost always discussion regarding skill sets and gaps in needed skill sets, but with NO substance. The employee voices the need for additional training, the Boss documents it in the evaluation, small talk ensues, and nothing happens.

Why does this happen? It happens due to leadership checking the boxes on “what” they are responsible to do in defining skill needs and gaps, but they do not understand the mechanics of “why” it is so imperative to be engaged in these evaluations and the subsequent provision of training to employees.

“Why,” is the higher purpose of leadership to provide tools and methods that objectively and factually evaluate skill gaps without retribution. The next step is to then work jointly with employees to provide training, coaching, and mentoring to close the gaps.

Great organizations and leaders recognize the “why” and take the time and energy to put forth effort.Juran has been fortunate to partner with some of these great organizations.

Organizational Gap Identification

Juran has developed, during our almost 40 years of existence, a model for evaluating gaps in quality professionals’ competency needs and expectations. It has two components:

  • A written review based the universal body of knowledge (BOK) requirements for quality professionals to assess basic technical knowledge-relative to quality theory and practices. This is an analysis developed through years of experience working with international certification agencies, clients, and offices of higher education.
  • An oral review to discern each professional’s aptitude relative to quality theory, critical thinking, problem solving, teamwork, coaching, and auditing-as well as other identified critical categories.

Person Holding a Lightbulb with Flare

Check out our newest whitepaper “How the Soft-Skills Gap Creates Quality Problems.” Download from our resources.

These reviews are conducted using in-depth discussions with questions and problems. The seven areas covered are:

  1. QT — quality theory, including basic quality concepts
  2. CT — critical thinking and problem-solving, such as developing an approach for solving a problem
  3. RC — root cause analysis
  4. ST — statistics
  5. PC — process control
  6. TC — teamwork and coaching
  7. A — auditing

Leadership at these great organizations utilize this information to evaluate competencies by individuals, job grades, job titles, divisions, etc., and DEVELOP and IMPLEMENT specific training needs for gap closure. Yes, action is taken for gap closure, not just general discussion during a less than objective performance evaluation.

Let’s be effective leaders. Don’t just check the boxes on “what” you are responsible to do in defining skill needs and gaps. Understand “why” it is imperative as leadership to be engaged in these evaluations. Utilize proven methods and universal principles to identify gaps. Proactively provide the needed training and resources to close the gaps.




For more information on how Juran can help you leverage leadership to improve business quality and productivity, please get in touch with the team.


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