When I survey groups of managers and employees about their perception of the performance evaluation process, most of them either love the process and feel it is one of the most productive conversations they have all year, or they dread the process and feel that it is almost painful and leaves them demotivated. There are very few who shrug their shoulders and think it is “ok”. No matter which end of the Performance Appraisal Spectrum you fall, here are tips to make your performance appraisal more productive and motivational for you and your employees!
A Fortune 500 company surveyed 30,000 employees to identify what information was most important to their development and what information would help retain them at the company. While the feedback was diverse, there were 5 themes that became readily apparent.
- What level of performance is expected of me?
- What is my current level of performance relative to the company’s expectations?
- In what areas do I need to improve and what steps do I need to take to upgrade my current level of performance?
- What are my career opportunities with this company?
- What is the payoff for my contribution?
These 5 questions are applicable to all organizations and universal to most employees. Consider including them in your performance appraisal conversation to ensure a more meaningful discussion with your employees. As you prepare for your performance appraisal conversation, you may feel like you have an abundance of data about your employees’ performance, or you don’t have enough. Here are some tips to assist you in preparing for your performance appraisal conversation.
3 Bonus Tips for effective Performance Appraisals
These proven tips will ensure your performance appraisal process is productive and motivational to your employees and you!
- Provide timely and meaningful feedback throughout the year.
a. Communicate what success looks like for your employees’ role; what are your expectations.
b. Thank your employees for a job well done – your appreciation will be rewarded with increased productive behavior.
c. Correct mistakes when you see them, remember to provide suggestions of alternative behaviors that will get more productive results.
- Keep notes throughout the year!
a. Keep a notebook, computer notes, or folders with coaching notes and praise notes.
b. Your notes should include; What happened, When did it happen, Who was involved, What was the impact of the situation, When did you discuss the situation with the employee, and What was the result of your coaching conversation include new behaviors that got new results.
c. Remember to also keep notes of situations when you thanked your employee and what they did which was beyond their normal job duties.
- How to engage your employees in the performance appraisal conversation. Do you feel like you are delivering a monologue during your employees’ evaluation? Ideally your evaluation meetings should be a conversation with equal participation by you and your employee.
a. Ask the employee to share their perceptions about their major accomplishments, current responsibilities that need to improve, how you can help improve their performance by providing more training or feedback, and what is their interest in new job responsibilities.
b. Set goals together for performance improvement and document those goals on the evaluation
c. Allow time for and request questions
d. Follow up to monitor progress on performance goals throughout the year, typically monthly or quarterly follow up is appropriate.
Please send me a note if you have questions about how to approach an employee situation. I can be reached at 303-993-2364 or email@example.com.