This topic can be interpreted in 2 ways- One is how should one prepare & do a Performance Review as a 1st time People Manager & the other one is if you’re a new employee, how should one prepare for a performance review to be conducted by one’s supervisor.
Here, we will be referring to the 1st one. If you have recently stepped into the managerial position, it’s ok to feel a little pressure when assessing people based on their performance. Where your MBA degree might have taught you a little about motivating and managing people under your supervision, it doesn’t prepare you for the hardest part of your job: performance review. Here are a few tips for you to refresh & incorporate into your managerial style, which will help you get better at reviews.
- Prior Homework
The first thing you need to realize that that no two employees are similar and no one is perfect. Each employee has his own strengths and weaknesses. It is the trait of a good manager to figure out the qualities of his employees. With performance reviews, you can highlight those strengths and areas of development so that a person grows professionally and is guided towards the path of success under your supervision. Make sure that you don’t do any favoritism or hold grudges against a particular employee. Always assess people on the basis of their performance. Seek inputs from peers or other stakeholders. Prepare for the discussion with facts & examples, rather than only subjective opinions.
- Use an Appropriate Tone
When writing a performance review or during a performance discussion, the tone of the content matters a lot. The tone you use shapes an employee for a better future. The goal of a performance review should not be to belittle an employee or to congratulate them on their good performance overly. The goal should always be to help them improve. You should keep certain aspects like his/her achievements, punctuality, communication skills, and cooperation etc. in mind.
- Listen to Your Employees
You must always give your employee a chance to talk so that they can tell you about their problems. Remember that a performance review is not only a nerve-wrecking experience for you but also for your employees. When you tell your employees that they lack in a certain part of their job, you must always hear their side of the story. Even if you don’t agree with them, it is always better to make them feel that their problems are being heard of. Two way open communication is the master key.
4. Don’t Go Overboard With Praises or Criticism
As discussed before, the goal of a performance review is not only to let your employees know how they are doing but to help them improve at what they are doing. You don’t want to shower your high-performing employees with praises as they often get cocky and burn out. Likewise, you should not belittle someone who has had a poor year with a lot of criticism. You should make them understand that if they take the criticism made against them positively, it will help them get better and their job and their next job performance review will be a lot better. Use reviews as a way to help your employees set goals and achieve them.
Aparna Sharma | Senior HR Professional & Certified Corporate Director I Editor’s Collection