Do you let your employees slack off during the holiday season? This article will provide you with the Top 10 reasons to manage performance year round so that you don't face the same management problems in the New Year. Whether you're an executive [url=][/url] , a manager or a team leader, the following information will be beneficial to you.

Ahhh, the holidays. A time for family, parties, good food, football, gifts and oh, yes - work. It's not last by accident in this list; to the detriment of organizations everywhere [url=][/url] , work often comes last this time of year. Not that I want to be Ebenezer and dampen anyone's holiday parade. I enjoy the holidays as much as the next person. But I've seen leaders let up on employee performance programs during this time of year only to face the same management problems in the New Year. With neglect, they may even worsen.

So a word to the wise men and women out there who are trying to do well by their employees: The right time to manage your employees is NOW, as well as the other 11 months of the year. You will do your best work if you keep employee performance on the front burner, where it belongs, all year long.

The wheels are turning now. Some of you are wondering why you cannot relax for these last few weeks of the year and even through part of January. After all, you and your workers have toiled so hard. The answer is that you will toil even harder later if you put off important tasks today. With a doff of my stocking cap to all HR professionals out there, here are my Top Ten Reasons to Manage Performance Year Round:

1. Complacency is a disease that plagues business. And guess what? It's contagious. The people in one department see their colleagues in another department slacking off right before or right after the company party, and they decide to do the same. Someone meets his goal for November and decides he can tread water in December. His counterpart takes the cue [url=][/url] , whether she met her goals last month or not. Believe me, this illness spreads -- and quickly! -- once it gets started. The only known cure is to wash your hands of it from the start to keep it out of your organization.

2. Procrastination is complacency's cousin. The Big P sets in once people are already infected with complacency. Its symptoms include putting off the most difficult tasks from day to day, doing the easy things first, and busying yourself throughout the day with ONLY the easy things. Soon we forget the difficult tasks altogether. The cure? Control The Big C. If you keep that infection out of the workplace, The Big P is easier to manage too.

3. Habits are hard to break. That's why we want only good ones in the workplace. But if you let bad ones grab a toehold, even for a little while, they might just gain a foothold. Soon they have hoisted themselves all the way into your business, and the veteran hard worker who started coming late one Monday now makes a habit of it then and on Fridays too. Or the manager who "forgot" to use a key recruiting assessment tool once or twice now overlooks it all the time. One study suggests that given time [url=][/url] , bad habits become learned behaviors, and we lapse back into them when we're under stress. Since stress is a normal part of the work environment, maintaining good work habits is a discipline we need to observe daily.

4. Set a good example for new workers. Bringing in new staff is a regular event at many places, even during the holidays. Put yourself in the new hire's shoes: How will she view the office partying the last half of November and all of December? How do you want her to see YOU?

5. Set an example for everyone. Closely related to showing the new person how work is done in your office is showing everyone else - your colleagues, your boss, your direct reports. Adopt a professional demeanor and it's likely to be viral - in a good way.

6. Manage performance while other business is less "busy." Perhaps some of the companies you work with have slowed down production a bit. Turn this external hiatus into internal productivity. While you have the time, review the things you and your staff need to improve, then put in place a plan to do so.

7. Control the things you can. This is closely related to items 5 and 6. You might not be able to do anything about another department's departure from the day-to-day routine [url=][/url] , but you don't have to join them or beat them. Control your own space by managing well. Maybe it will rub off on the other guys.

8. Your competitors are not snoozing, especially if you are in first place and they are in second or third. If you are not in first place, this could be a good time to redouble your efforts and get there. If you are in first place, remember that old adage, 'The bigger they are!

9. Find ways to celebrate all year long. Really. Successful companies should reward their employees year-round, not just once a year. Yes, the end-of-year holidays are a special time for families and friends. But if you take the time to praise and recognize your workforce regularly, your business will reap the benefits year-round and expectations for unending special holiday treatment will lessen.

10. It's a kindness to your organization and to all of your employees to show off a well-managed workforce all of the time. Consider it a beautifully wrapped gift to everyone [url=][/url] , including you.

Happy holidays!
Author's Resource Box

Jim Sirbasku is co-founder and CEO of Profiles International, a leading provider of human resource management solutions and employment assessments for businesses worldwide. For more information about performance management, visit our website.