The Best Way To Give An Employee A Performance Review

The Best Way To Give An Employee A Performance Review

The Best Way To Give An Employee A Performance Review

There is no single procedure to conduct performance appraisals. They differ from business to business and manager to manager. Nonetheless, the best procedure for a performance review is one that helps you get a productive job performance from your employees. Towards that goal, you must direct your efforts to integrate suitable techniques to give your feedback. Here are a few suggestions:

Keep it professional: Your attitude is what determines the outcome of the appraisal. Therefore, ensure that you conduct yourself professionally during the procedure. The very purpose of an appraisal will be lost when you become judgmental. So put yourself in your employee’s shoes and see where his performance is lacking and what kind of corrective course can improve his performance.

Keep it continuous: Don’t keep your feedback for only annual performance reviews. If you do so, any negative feedback can shock your employee, creating a negative impression about your intent in bringing about such feedback at that stage. So, ensure that the employee understands your expectations very early in the year and keep giving him feedback on his performance time and again. This will enable him to have a fair knowledge of his performance and be in a confident position to face the final annual review.

Balance the feedback: Follow a sandwich approach in giving feedback, putting one negative point between two positive points. This will make him feel valued for the positive contributions he has made to his position and allow him to take his performance to the next level without any ruckus.

Time to reflect: Give him time to reflect on your feedback before scheduling a discussion meeting. Any meaningful discussion is possible when your employee is given enough time to digest the feedback you gave and analyze its pluses and minuses. So, give him ample time before you schedule a meeting. When you meet with him, ensure that you sit with him without interruptions and listen to him completely. Here, you must play a listener’s role, allowing the employee to talk his mind out. Then, all you need do is to just clarify his doubts and figure out what you can do to make him more successful.

Do not blame others: Though it is good to take the opinions of the other team members and your immediate reports before preparing your review, you must validate their views and incorporate only the genuine ones. However, once you include these, you should not blame them when the employee comes up with a convincing counterargument.

Set Objective: Set new and mutually acceptable objectives for the next year. A successful performance review is one in which there is a meaningful discussion on not only the employee’s present achievements and failures but also your expectations of him the next year. Ensure that you discuss with the employee the time frame to achieve the level of performance you expect of him.

Thus, a structured, result-oriented and unbiased approach to pass feedback can pay you rich dividends in terms of enhanced employee satisfaction, better performance and loyalty.

Do share your thoughts on the same.

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  • Make the feedback a regular, scheduled occurence, use evidence to support your statements, allow the individual the opportunity to comment upon their performance first and end the meeting positively.

  • It’s in many ways the toughest job in the world. But as with most things, honesty pays.

    You need to discuss what didn’t work as much as what did work, the difference being that the discussion on what didn’t work has to include solutions, suggestions and proposals for how things could be done differently. The consequent debate is then often a learning experience for both parties, and helps build trust!

  • Excellent suggestions that get at the “how” to give feedback. One other element that is very important is the “how to be” when giving feedback. Any reluctance or avoidance to give feedback is simply an aspect of the “victim mentality,” which can be released. The victim mentality is a pervasive idea, one that is focused on blame, and basically selfish.

    If we truly care about others and our organization, we will give the necessary feedback. Releasing victim mentality can help us receive feedback too.

  • I train managers on a very simple formula for delivering both positive and corrective performance feedback. FACT – IMPACT – SOLUTION or REINFORCEMENT. State the facts (what you saw, heard, observed or noticed) then move into discussing the impact of those facts (how did those actions impact the individual, the team, the company, the manager) and then offer reinforcement if the behaviors are something you would like to see continue OR engage in a solution discussion if the behaviors need to change. This is a feedback model that should be used every time you are discussing performance because it removes “personal opinion” from the equation. Another big piece of delivering feedback is understanding the style of the employees and best way to approach them in order to have the most successful outcome. This is topic that can’t be outlined here but is just as important.

  • In my experience ‘sandwich feedback’ doesn’t work, people tend to get to know the structure and wait for the negative between two positives! Rather have different, separate conversations about feedback which is ‘positive’ or supportive, where you want to encourage / sustain the behaviour, and ‘negative’ or corrective, where you want to discourage or change behaviour. Always use a coaching style which allows the employee contribute to the future state / behaviour.

  • Graham Symmons

    Whilst working with a volunteer youth group I was required to give feedback to young people, staff both volunteer and paid.The style in which it was required to be given was something I found very useful and even though quite simplistic covers a lot of the comments and thoughts given in this discussion. The process obviously commenced with some research and understanding of the performance of the other person. You then said in your mind’s eye as you began the discussion with them “how was it for you in the bath tub darling”; this put you in a very much lighter frame of mind to enable good informed interaction to take place. The bathtub also gave you a visual cue as to how you should deliver that feedback and appraisal info – think of the shape of the tub (a large U) starting at the left hand side give them their best best state, then their least best state, then their worst worst state and finally their best worst state – that way they are given some positive encouragement are brought gradually down and then finally when they leave do so on a little high feeling not the worst for the process and probably more willing to engage in future sessions. As I mentioned it may be quite simplistic a technique for most of the very experienced members of this forum, but it worked (and continues to work) for my approach.

  • I feel that feedback should be continuous and properly given. I always used praise in public and reprimand in private.
    Also when you reprimand or appraise turn it into a conversation first.
    Here is what I mean, start by stating the observation as you see it. Then ask if the employee agrees with what you saw. Then ask the employee as to why it occurred. It may be the employee needs a particular training to correct the issue. The less negative you can make the process the better it goes for both parties. I have found in most cases it was the process not the person that was the root cause.

  • Graham Symmons


    @Joesep; I think you have to be very careful with giving praise in public – I am aware that many colleagues did not like that sort of public acclaim, they would far rather have had a quiet word from me. Giving ‘unwelcome’ praise in public can in fact have a negative impact upon the desired effect.

    Take care and make sure you know and understand the person to whom you are giving feedback to else you may have an issue develop.