3 Tips for Performance Reviews
’Tis the season! Yes…it’s Christmas time, but it’s also performance review season for many of us, or if your company runs off of some weird fiscal year it may also be mid-year review time. Unlike the feelings of joy and wonderment that are exuded by many during the holiday season, performance reviews can bring out pangs of despair for employee’s and managers alike (don’t go sipping on the egg nog just yet). To ease your pain, here are three tips you can use to make your next performance review a positive and constructive one for your team members:
1. Set the stage.
Performance review’s can be awkward and nerve-racking moments for employee’s, so it’s important to set the stage when preparing to review your employee’s performance. Selecting a neutral location for example, a conference room as opposed to your office; will help your employee feel more at ease during the review. A casual yet private location will encourage open communication and help make your employee more receptive to your feedback.
2. Remain Positive.
An annual performance review isn’t the time to berate your employee for poor performance (if applicable). As a manager, you should have been providing feedback throughout the course of the year, and an annual performance review should be a recap of items discussed previously. During your review, emphasize to your employee that while you are reviewing the past, you are doing so in order to improve future performance.
Some items to help you along with your conversation are:
• Help your employee determine the reasons for past failures and ways to avoid them in the future
• Do not place blame – (What’s done is done – no need to cry over spilt milk, right?)
• Focus on problem solving (but don’t solve your employees problems for them)
• Offer suggestions to your employee about how to achieve improvement
3. Monitor Ongoing Performance.
Once you and your employee have identified areas of improvement, together with your employee; set benchmarks or goals and dates to review their ongoing performance. Remember, the issues in a performance appraisal shouldn’t come as surprise to your employees, be sure to touch base often. Make sure to update goals and objectives as conditions in the workplace change (i.e. project change/end, new responsibilities, etc).
As a manager, you should be doing your part also; keep an accurate record of your employee’s performance (and include not just the bad stuff, but the good stuff as well).