Because accountability relates to people, relationship management is necessarily involved in accountability.

When thinking about performance management, it’s important to never lose sight of one critical thing: these are people, and they will react to whatever you say, do, or imply. Sometimes we lose sight of this fact. Too many management books, tutorials, or presentations offer up “systems” or “methodologies” for performance management as if people are deterministic machines, just waiting for the right tuning parameters to bring them to a state of bliss. Sadly (or happily, depending on your perspective), each individual on your team is just that, an individual. They bring with them their own perspectives, based on their unique histories and experiences (and such multiplicity strengthens a team!). As a result, each person will react differently to any given policy or suggestion.

The best way to avoid thinking about people as “cogs in the machine” is to take strong steps to see them as people. You can start by refusing to refer to them as “resources,” as so many managers do. But the best way to see them as people is to build a strong relationship with each one of them.

Level up your interview prep. Join Educative to access 70+ hands-on prep courses.