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Performance Counseling


Key to managing in a positive culture is the ability to effectively communicate expectations and drive personal accountability.  The 95/5 Performance Counseling approach is designed to communicate expected behaviors and  employee commitment to change.  In most organizations the disciplinary process is viewed negatively by employees and managers alike. 

From the employee perspective discipline is only used when a person is in trouble or the “company” wants to fire someone.  And why not?  The terminology supports their beliefs.  In most organizations the first level of discipline is a “Verbal Warning” (usually in writing—go figure), with the last line “Failure to improve will lead to further disciplinary action up to and including termination.”

Managers often view the process as ineffective and  often a waste of time and thus do not utilize the process except as a last resort.  More often than not, the discussions are about the employee “breaking a rule”, and the employee counters with “they are not the only one”, or “why is there so much favoritism?”.

The 95/5 Performance Counseling model provides a problem solving approach to address real performance issues.  The focus is on performance expectations and behaviors.  The conversation quickly determines the employee’s understanding of the expectation and their willingness to commit to and develop a plan to address the problem. To help create a clearer focus on the objective of the discussions the terminology is drastically different than the typical progressive discipline model. 


Our model includes four phases:

  • Clarifying Expectations

  • Developing Commitment

  • Decision Making

  • Termination of Employment

Documentation of the discussion is completed post meeting in order to

include the actions the employee committed to.  If the employee fails to

maintain their commitment future discussions focus on the failed personal

commitment and personal accountability for not following through.

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