From HICD to LPC: Importance of an Agile Process – ME&A
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From HICD to LPC: Importance of an Agile Process

Leading Performance Capability (LPC) is defined as: “The systematic process by which an organization involves its co-workers, as individuals and members of a group, in improving organizational effectiveness in the accomplishment of organizational missions and goals.”

We consider LPC a proactive system of managing co-worker performance for leading individuals and their organizations towards desired performance and results. It’s about striking a harmonious alignment between individual and organizational objectives, for accomplishment of excellence in performance.

Importance of Agile Process
In addition, several current organizational changes have made developing a more agile process important:

  • Our clients want to get and give feedback regularly;
  • Our co-workers and organizations expect learning to be lifelong;
  • Important decisions about whom to promote, how much of a raise to give, and whom to move into a new role, are getting easier and more optimal through meaningful data and metrics;
  • Our organizations operate in teams, so performance leadership must become local.

When organizations focus on team performance, they evaluate success by different metrics. Trust, inclusion, diversity, and clarity of roles will become critical to team success. Measuring these new metrics will require new tools and approaches, thoughtful experimentation, and a willingness to adopt new models. Performance leadership transforms every interactional opportunity with a co-worker into a learning-for-performance occasion.

To summarize, LPC is the strategy of:

  • Planning work, and setting expectations;
  • Continually monitoring performance;
  • Developing the capacity to perform;
  • Periodically rating performance in a summary fashion;
  • Rewarding effective performance.

Finally, a leadership performance process sets the platform for rewarding excellence, by aligning individual co-worker accomplishments with the organization’s mission and objectives, and making the co-worker and the organization understand the importance of a specific job in realizing outcomes. By establishing clear performance expectations, which include results, actions, and behaviors, it helps co-workers to understand what exactly is expected out of them, and setting standards that help in eliminating those jobs, which are relevant. Through regular feedback and coaching, it provides an advantage of diagnosing the problems at an early stage, then taking corrective actions.

USAID and the HICD Strategy
Human and Institutional Capacity Development (HICD), on the other hand, is the dominant strategy currently implemented by USAID in many of its international development projects. USAID considers HICD as a model of structured and integrated processes, designed to identify fundamental causes of performance gaps in host country institutions; to address those gaps through a wide array of performance solutions in the context of all human performance factors; and to enable cyclical processes of continuous performance improvement through the establishment of performance monitoring systems.

Both HICD and LPC are based on the International Society for Performance Improvement’s basic philosophy for building human performance systems. I summarize them this way, and they form the foundation of LPC:

  • Maintain a sharp FOCUS.
  • Concentrate on OUTCOMES.
  • Base on performance OBJECTIVES.
  • Structure around a SYSTEMATIC approach.
  • Provide INCLUSION with as many representatives of the co-worker communities as feasible.
  • Be verifiably VALID in its individual and institutional impacts.

The intent of LPC is to enable our partners to identify barriers to the desired performance level, and to implement performance solutions to eliminate those barriers. The ultimate goal of LPC is: To help our organizational partners fulfill their mandates, and provide the optimal level of service to their constituents, stakeholders, and clients.