Making Small Changes to Performance Reviews Makes Effective Employees

by Jody Ordioni

Making Small Changes to Performance Reviews Makes Effective Employees

Performance reviews are a great insight to understand what is working for the company and what is not. Though performance reviews can help to increase the overall efficiency of the company, the current method of conducting reviews is filled with gaps. The lag time between the reviews being conducted and the employees getting useful feedback is detrimental to general productivity. The employees might be using the incorrect methods for months already, by the time the feedback reaches them. This impacts the bottom line of the company. So, what should be done? Incorporating these small changes can increase the effectiveness greatly:

Increasing the Frequency of the Reviews

The time lag between the reviews and employees receiving the feedback can be greatly reduced if the frequency of performance reviews is increased. By initiating informal reviews, which can occur every week, real-time analysis of the work can be provided.

The appraisal can go both ways, with employees bringing to notice their concerns and the obstacles they are facing. Frequent meetings also help in building a better employee-employer relationship. Thus, there is merit in increasing the frequency of performance reviews, rather than making them a yearly event only.

Keep on Checking Up with the Employees

Employers are often not approachable enough for the employees to feel comfortable sharing their professional concerns with. If managers can make a habit of checking up on their employees, then engagement might positively increase. It would also make up space for more informal conversations regarding performance, goals, project metrics, etc.

Casual performance reviews are more helpful in creating effective engagement across the organization. Shorter but frequent meetings will also improve productivity by immediately solving the problems at hand, rather than continuing with the incorrect method that would demand the project to be reworked.

Re-evaluating Your Approach

Sometimes, simply increasing the frequency of reviews will not solve the problem, if the approach is wrong. Evaluation should be considered more as guidance to the employees, than a reprimand. The goal of a manager is to help the poor performers improve and not to humiliate them through the performance reviews. Additionally, the idea should be to create a system that helps to develop self-evaluation skills in the employees.

If your organization is divided into specific teams, peer reviews can be a better way of boosting engagement and effectiveness. They will help employees understand the project and their contribution to it, in better terms. Though it is not possible to combine peer reviews with performance feedback, every week, it can be done once or twice a year for the appraisal process.

Valuing Real-Time Feedback

Performance reviews can help employees to correct their general performance, however, it is more beneficial to give real-time feedback since that can help to solve the problems on hand. In addition to this, by providing immediate recognition, employers can encourage the team to work harder towards their goals. It is not mandatory to wait for a scheduled meeting to provide feedback. Informal feedback and recognition are highly important to keep the employees motivated and engaged with the work they do. Positive recognition should also become a regular feature in, both, formal and informal settings.

Change Happens Over Time

Performance reviews do not have to be a stress-inducing activity, for either the employer or the employees. By making the reviews informal and frequent, the anxiety of employees can be reduced. Effectiveness can be increased by the casual feedbacks provided to the employees. After some time, the employees will also be more open to working on their methods, as per the feedback given to them. The contributions they make to the business will also be highlighted and engage the employees more with the company.

The Bottom Line

It might seem that the current method of conducting performance reviews is feasible, however, it does impact the efficiency of the organization, in the long term. By introducing small changes to the process of performance reviews, you can revamp employee engagement and productivity levels, simultaneously. This is especially beneficial, in the current job scenario when retention is becoming difficult and talent recruitment more competitive.

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