Yearly productivity meetings and performance appraisals aren’t fun for anyone. As a manager, it’s difficult to bring yourself to face the music when the time comes. No one wants to offer criticism of the work of others – especially when raises, bonuses, and even livelihoods are at stake. The worst part is that these appraisals are often quite subjective in nature, which means that employees may feel personally slighted. It drives yet another wedge between management and staff – one that may be unnecessary.
Most managers actually feel that constantly monitoring, measuring, and making note of employees’ progress throughout the year is not an effective use of their time. They’d much rather find a different way to measure and/or define the effectiveness of employees. Once you’ve reached this line of thought concerning the performance appraisal process, perhaps it’s time to make a change for the better in the way things are done.
Return to the True Purpose of Performance Evaluations
Back in the day, these evaluations were important tools to help employees determine how well they were doing in their roles and to touch base with management on opportunities for advancement. It was also an opportunity for management to point out areas where improvements were needed. Today it feels more like an inquisition than an effective measurement and evaluation tool.
That’s why it’s so important to implement a more productive evaluation system for the sake of your business – and the happiness of your employees. You see, employees appreciate an opportunity to determine their success, especially when they are given a clearly defined set of goals to accomplish in order to be successful within the company.
Here are a few things you should keep in mind for future employee evaluations.
1) Plan ahead. Write out a clear definition for the job, the duties of the job, and the responsibilities of the employee in his role. Define performance goals with clearly listed measurements of the outcome. Give the employee a clear priority for job responsibilities and goals. Define performance standards for each component of the job. Provide feedback along the way so that the employee knows where improvements are needed or when praise is merited. Keep records of performance throughout the appraisal period.
2) Assess employee’s performance. Schedule a time when you can sit down with the employee and have an in-depth discussion of his performance throughout the evaluation period. Praise strengths and point out weaknesses. The goal is to show the employee where improvements can be made without devaluing the contributions the employee has made throughout the period of appraisal. Ask for feedback from the employee about what goals he would like to set for himself and about his role within the company. Is he hoping to advance within the company? What aspects and skills does he feel will make him a better candidate for advancement?
3) Listen to employee responses and when possible, incorporate them into the goals established for the next appraisal period. Offer your own advice and experience to help steer him in the right direction.
Employees are happiest when they have a clearly defined idea of what they should be doing in order to achieve their goals. They like to be recognized for their contributions and will generally accept criticism with grace when they feel their ideas are being heard and their work is valued. A performance development plan like this sets the stage for a much happier and more productive workforce.
For a support with your staffing management needs, be sure to contact Stark Talent today.