Is Your Performance Review Really Necessary?
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Performance review – lots of organizations carry out “performance appraisals.” Most people consider them a “good thing!” And there is lots of information around to help you do them well.
But there is more to encouraging and managing good performance than carrying out the annual performance review. Some people even question whether carrying out annual performance reviews does actually impact on the quality of performance.
Performance review – what the person being assessed usually thinks about
Let us think a little about what the person being assessed usually thinks about when a review is due. Here’s what it likely to be
- How is this review going to affect my bonus/performance related pay?
- How am I being assessed and is it fair?
- Is my contribution really going to be recognised and acknowledged?
- How does this review affect my chance of promotion?
- How well am I doing compared to my peers?
Performance review – what the manager thinks about
A manager thinks about the performance review in a different way;
- How will you help the person understand what you think of their performance?
- What evidence is needed to support your view?
- If they are not meeting the standard, what advice should you give?
- What action should follow on from the review?
If you are the manager, you are looking to do an assessment that helps your member of staff become more committed to your objectives. You hope they will feel more motivated, accountable, reliable, creative, dedicated, and, yes, happier in the job!
On-going and constructive review
Given the difference in perspectives, holding just one annual performance review doesn’t really seem to meet either sides expectations, does it? Surely what you need instead is a relationship that includes on-going and constructive review?
No, you don’t want spend every day discussing performance. Although there is much to be said about commenting very quickly on exceptions in performance – be they good or bad. Giving praise is as important as giving criticism.
Having a performance stock take once a month works for many! Certainly, having a more formal review quarterly where the question of the bonus isn’t part of the mix has worked for me. And then, at the end of the year it is an agreed summary of those quarterly reviews that feeds into the financial reward system.
Developing an effective relationship and an open discussion about the quality of performance is much more likely to help you and your staff member achieve your goals, both corporate and personal.
Remember, performance management is the process of creating a work environment or setting in which people are enabled to perform to the best of their abilities. Performance management is a whole work system that begins when a job is defined as needed. It ends when an employee leaves your organization.
With a performance management system that works and a well developed relationship, it becomes much easier to discuss career development and the opportunities for progression. And guess what, in this climate potential threats to good performance can be seen off before they become real issues and so everyone benefits.
Good luck with your performance review and get in touch with me if you would like more information about how to succeed at work and as a manager.