The Challenge of Insider Threat Prevention and the Success of Continuous Performance Management

Trust and Openness through Networks of Teams

Let me make an uncomfortable statement: “Cyber Terror challenges entire societies and threatens contemporary civilization.”

At the very least, I can assert this on technological, sociological, behavioral, spiritual, economical, and political grounds. From whatever perspective you adopt or disciplinary place you begin, you can rationally make the same assertion.

You may or may not be aware of it, but a global confederation of ill-intentioned groups exists that seeks to "wreak havoc and unleash the dogs of war" on the digital world. Digital Intrusion has already replaced Digital Transformation as the ever deepening priority of developed nations.

This Cyber War has already begun and it is insidiously spreading. Many forces fuel this fire of complicated discontent. It will take a brilliant effort to quell this crisis of spirit that seeks only to disrupt the structure of modern life for us who are the target of such callous disruption. At the same time that this Digital Conflict has begun to execute its malicious program, we conduct our daily business in workplaces that invite Cyber Terrorists to destroy our plans and dull our best visions for a brighter human future.

Sadly, without realizing it, corporate leaders adopt strategies that ensure the inevitable victory of those who wish to disrupt our way of life. Continuous Performance Management is one of these ill-begotten organization strategies that deliver comfort to the malicious intruders who seek to destroy our way of life.

Hallmarks of Continuous Performance Management

Currently, the common model of CPM contains eight components of workplace action. Many of these reflect a departure from past management practice. These Hallmarks include:

1. Focus on Coaching and Development

2. Dynamic Goals

3. Continuous Check-in Conversations

4. Self-Reflection

5. Periodic Performance /Development Snapshots

6. Frequent Data Collection

7. Crowdsourced Constructive Feedback

8. Crowdsourced Recognition

Focus on Coaching, Dynamic Goals, Self-Reflection and Crowdsourced Constructive Feedback gives evidence to the significant changes that now influence management thinking at the macro level of workplace relationships. The eight Hallmarks do not merely signify new activities for employees. Rather, they indicate the emergence of a new manager-employee social contract. Unlike the previous generation of workers, employees now expect opportunities that offer rapid career growth. They do not expect to be left behind. Generally, employees come to the workplace energized by a sense of mission and purpose uncommon in the past. Moreover, they want a compelling job that provides enough flexibility to enable them to balance their personal and work time.

The Philosophical Shift of CPM

CPM represents a philosophical shift in management thinking and practice. It recognizes that employees desire to improve their skills and deliver excellence in meeting goals. It affirms that the organization’s primary role is to support employees in following these two paths. Since the hallmark components of CPM certainly exist, management can incorporate them into their organization’s CPM approach in several different ways. Even when an organization adopts CPM in ways different from other organizations, they still attain many benefits. The rapid transition to Continuous Performance Management is fueled by three potent forces. CPM is about much more than making sure people talk to each other more. CPM also delivers shifts in the areas of:

1. Data and information accessibility

2. Organization control of work and feedback

3. Connection of performance management with culture

These three shifts in organization design became the new framework for adopting CPM. Management adopts CPM by initiating an organization change program consisting of the following challenging actions. Management:

1. Clarifies how much change is best for the organization

2. Adopts a design approach

3. Refines their CPM activities

4. Identifies the macro-level drivers of change in their organizations that compelled the adoption of CPM

5. Defines the three critical shifts that structure the continuous changes in the organization’s performance management environment.

Changing the nature of work by transitioning from a hierarchical to an open networked, team-based approach significantly impacts an organization’s Talent Management system. For starters, not everyone does well in an open, networked environment engaging in Crowdsourced Constructive Feedback and Crowdsourced Recognition.

Regardless of the organization design or the business architecture employed, people are people and cliques can become brutal very quickly. While the networked approach may not yet be the reality for all workers everywhere, CPM has become the general trend for organizations of every size regardless of location or industry examined. This is going to generate a terrible conflict for organizations as Cyber Security professionals begin to implement Zero Trust strategies and Insider Threat Prevention programs that impact the Hallmarks of Continuous Performance Management.

Positive regard for all of humanity aside, Cyber Terrorist now possess the global infrastructure required to destroy an entire company in a single afternoon. CPM is not prepared to close the Cyber Security Gap

The Hallmarks of CPM have to change to accommodate the necessity of Insider Threat Prevention.

Think about it.......

Una vita e non basta.

Ray Newkirk

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Copyright © June 26, 2019 Raymond L. Newkirk 

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