Calibration | Meaning and Definition

What is calibration?

Calibration is the process of ensuring that employee performance over time is aligned with organizational objectives. In other words, it’s a way to ensure that everyone on the team is rowing in the same direction and that each person’s effort contributes to the company’s overall success. 

There are a few different ways to calibrate employee performance. One common method is to regularly review individual goals and objectives (monthly or quarterly) to ensure they’re still relevant and in line with what the company wants to achieve. Another way is to conduct annual or semiannual performance development reviews. Managers sit down with their direct reports and give them feedback on their progress over the past year. 

Overall, calibration means making sure that our observations and judgments of others are accurate. We calibrate by taking things like personal biases, preconceived notions, and emotional responses. We also calibrate by seeking additional information about the person we’re judging. This may include getting feedback from others who know the person well or researching what other people have said about them to understand the deeper meaning of the calibration definition

Benefits of Calibration

  • Assuring that employees are held accountable and that their performance is up to par according to company standards is one of the main benefits of calibration.
  • The process can bring individuals and teams together to have difficult conversations about role expectations and how everyone can improve.
  • Calibrations minimize subjectivity in ratings by providing leadership with a shared understanding of what “great” looks like for an organization or specific job function.
  • When done effectively, calibration Windows can help surface unconscious bias in leaders to be more aware of the impact their personal beliefs may have on ratings.
  • When everyone is on the same page, it is easier to identify top performers and potential areas for improvement.
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