Performance reviews are definitely a necessity, particularly if you want to keep your finger on the pulse of your workforce and encourage them to keep achieving. The issue that many HR departments face is how to conduct them to get the most useful information possible and streamline the entire process.
While written performance reviews are helpful, they rarely give you the full insight that a face-to-face interview will provide. You can certainly combine the two, giving the written review first and then reviewing the results with the employee, but when it comes to taking the time to actually sit down with each employee, you really can’t skimp.
The first step to holding a performance review is to set a clear agenda so that the employee will know exactly what is expected and what will be covered. Staying on track with a clear agenda will also help you save time!
Next, ask the employee if there are any specific things they would like to cover in the interview as well. Remember, you’ve got plenty of questions for them, but they may also have a few of their own.
Once the preliminaries are out of the way, you can move onto the meat of the review. Go over any specific challenges that were noted by either the employee or their manager, and how they felt they handled the situation and what, if anything, they might have done differently.
It’s also a great time to applaud them for their successes over the past review. Employees can tend to feel as though reviews are a little confrontational. Reminding them that you’re proud of the great things they accomplished will help put them at ease and help them open up a little more.
Now that you’ve covered this, it’s time to move on towards creating a plan of action for the next year. What things do they need to work on? What can you or your department do better to help facilitate their success?
Map out a strategic plan with the employee. When it’s time for their next review, you’ll both be able to go over that plan and see how well it worked. You’ll want to get them to agree to this plan and make suggestions of their own.
Before you close, thank them for their hard work and dedication. A simple thank you can go a long way towards employees developing stronger loyalties to your company and feeling better about their job as a whole. Wrap up the meeting with a quick summary of the points you covered and let them know you have an open door policy if they need any help in meeting the goals you’ve set together.
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