A performance review is usually a formal assessment evaluating an employee's work performance. It is used to identify strengths, weaknesses, and help diagnose potential issues. Its goal is to offer employees feedback by making them aware of problems through feedback and helps them set goals and objectives for the future. Managers that conduct performance reviews have an obligation to help their employees understand what they’re doing well, where they need improvement, what is expected of them, and what kind of changes they need to do to improve. It is also important for performance managers to have in mind larger company goals when doing a performance review. Conducting performance reviews can be a tool to more easily recognize high performing employees, communicate expectations, encourage growth, development, and engagement. Performance reviews can be formal and be conducted annually or quarterly or can be more casual one-on-one conversations done even more frequently.
Performance Review Tips
The employee should never hear about positive or negative performance for the first time at your formal performance discussion meeting. Managers should discuss both positive performance and areas for improvement regularly if they want their work to be effective. Aim to make the performance review discussion a re-emphasis of previously identified points.
Managers should never give criticism without giving a specific example. Giving an example is a way to help employees work on their weaknesses, even those that they were not aware of. It is important not to just give criticism but it is important to provide ideas for improvement that can help an employee better their performance rather than leave them feeling bad about themselves and defensive.
No matter if the employee’s performance was better or worse since the last performance review it is important to set goals for each employee. It is imperative that the employee knows exactly what is expected of their work and work performance.
The conversation is the key when you define an effective performance review meeting. If the managers are doing all of the talking, the employee will feel yelled at and treated unjustly. This is not how the company wants employees feeling as they leave their performance reviews. The employee has to trust managers want to help them improve their performance. Employees need to feel safe to talk about what is on their mind, how it affects their job performance. Sometimes they just lack motivation and need to hear managers say they have confidence in their ability to improve.
It is of utmost importance to document each employee's performance throughout the year. Recent events, whether they are good or bad, can impact your judgment of the employee’s performance. To assess the employee's performance fairly consult your notes about the issues they are facing and even projects or tasks they are excelling at.