Employee appraisals provide an opportunity for the employee and the boss to sit down one-on-one to discuss progress and goals, so why is it that these meetings are often dreaded and pointless?
Well, lack of appraisal training springs to mind. Too many managers turn up and just “wing it”. Although this is a time for the appraiser and the appraisee to get on the same page about the year ahead, appraisals are often mishandled by managers, who make the following mistakes during these meetings:
Do All Of The Talking
While no one can argue that a traditional appraisal is seen as a way for a manager to provide feedback to their worker on their performance, managers should never monopolise the conversation.
For example, if you have some negative feedback to deliver, make sure to allow the employee to explain their side of the story.
Perhaps you will find out that they didn’t have enough resources to get their job done, another colleague was disrupting their process or they simply needed additional training.
Even if you don’t have anything negative to say, still present your employee a chance to speak.
They may bring up some suggestions or concerns that you may not have considered that can improve the efficiency in your office and lead to a better working environment.
Focus Only On The Performance
Although an employee appraisal is meant to discuss the worker’s performance, that should not be the only thing you focus on.
This meeting provides a chance to converse with your team member uninterrupted, so use it to show the individual that you care about them and are invested in their success.
After discussing their performance, take the time to ask them about their personal and professional goals.
You can empower your employee if you understand their short and long term plans by helping them learn new skills and providing advice to help move them to the next level.
If your worker feels that you are invested in their success and see them as an individual instead of simply a replaceable body, they will be more eager to help you and the company succeed with their commitment and efforts.
Concentrate On The Negative
Nobody likes to hear bad feedback, even if it’s true.
If you concentrate on your staff’s negative qualities the entire time, chances are they will simply shut down, tune out or get too upset to have a productive conversation.
A good rule of thumb is to sandwich negative feedback between two positives.
Try saying something along the lines of:
“You are very helpful to your colleagues, taking the time to pitch in when it is required. However, I feel that you don’t always concentrate on deadlines, which has made you turn in work late three times in the last four months. I feel that you are very motivated to succeed, so with this feedback, I am sure you will improve.”
Head of Training
Originally published: 6 June, 2017
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