For owners of daycare and early learning centers, it is vital to have your directors and administrators pulling in the same direction. In order to achieve this, owners must set clear expectations and then follow through with accountability.
Holding your team accountable is easier said than done. Let’s look at a few tips and strategies to help you, the owner, ensure your top employees are doing their part.
- Set Clear and Measurable Goals
- Provide Honest, Open Feedback
- Have Directors Provide Self-Assessment Evidence
- Performance Bonuses
Set Clear and Measurable Goals
It’s easy for an owner to say something like, “You know what to do, just do it.” Some owners feel that if they hire the right person, they will do a good job, and that should be enough. In some ways, these things are true! Your directors and administrators should know how to do their jobs. But that’s not a clear and measurable goal.
In order to measure accountability, you need some sort of metric or goal to track. Whether that’s number of enrollments, positive feedback from families, or perhaps a financial goal tied to the bottom line of your business, let your directors and administrators know how they are being evaluated.
Provide Honest, Open Feedback
People should know where they stand. If you are very clear with your expectations and how they are going to be measured, then it should be rather easy to provide fact-based feedback.
The feedback can also go both ways. Ask your team members if they need more support, or if you could help them reach their goals by doing something differently. Open communication will make your entire business more successful.
Have Directors Provide Self-Assessment Evidence
This is a big one! Many owners dread performance reviews because they are time-consuming, and it is often difficult to provide constructive criticism. (Directors feel the same way about doing performance reviews with teachers and staff.)
To make performance reviews more effective, try flipping the script. Have your directors and administrators evaluate themselves, based on the goals and criteria you set forth. If you establish clear goals and how they will be measured, then your administrators should be able to track their own performance and collect evidence to support their success (or failure).
The benefits of self-evaluation are two-fold:
- The owner doesn’t have to spend hours writing reports and thinking of talking points
- The staff will recognize the opportunity (and responsibility) to document their efforts
Money is a powerful motivator! You might tie cash bonuses to the performance of your directors and administrators. If you define clear goals and your team achieves them, monetary rewards can be extremely impactful. Cash bonuses will also instill a tangible sense of achievement that your staff will want to replicate over the next evaluation period!
As an owner, you’ve got to know your staff. By understanding what motivates them, you can come up with a performance review plan that is both fair and effective.
Remember the two most important elements of performance review: clear expectations and honest feedback. When people know what’s expected and know where they stand, accountability becomes much more focused and achievable.