I hope that in your companies there are also performance evaluation meetings. No, I am sure of that. Today companies without good processes of evaluation hardly exist. Without it, without feedback sessions workers almost don’t know how to perform better, if their results are good enough or below the manager’s expectations and finally, what are employee’s points of improvement.
Do you know what compose of the Performance Evaluation (PE) in your company? Do you know how work of your employees and yours is measured? How many times during the year do you meet at this formal meeting? Employees evaluation is one of the manager's tasks.
You have to know that I am waiting for my PE session every year. Usually for this one at the beginning of the year when I can plan my actions for a year. The mid-year review helps me to calibrate my actions properly. Have you already heard the most popular joke regarding PE? Bonus after PE is like yeti - everyone has heard but no one has seen 😉
Below I present 7 easy advices for good PE - from a preparation to the summary. Those points are used by me few years in a row right now. I truly recommend them.
1. Prepare results from previous PE and check the availability of results from the present period.
This is your beginning. This is your start set for the whole PE. It depends on the company and system that is used, but your results from the previous year should be in and ready to read all the time. To prepare yourself you have to know how does PE look like in your company/ department. Do you need only KPI’s results? Do you need also the company’s values? If you need KPIs - check what are those goals. Are they summed up monthly or yearly? Which of them are important for the employee and which for the team? What is their wage? If you need to talk about the company’s values, how should it be done? With percent (25%-50%-75%-100%) or with a detailed opinion? Or maybe in a combination of both of them?
2. Compare results and set points of improvement (POI).
It is the time for the mathematics. Really! Numbers are important, sometimes even more than you think. When you compare results from this year with those from the previous period you can easily verify if there is any progress. This is something for what you are waiting for. A comparison will also tell you if a list of goals is correct or needs also some improvements. Maybe next year, you should change something? At this moment you can also prepare a list with points of improvement. As you have results and numbers, and as you can point out weak and strong sides, you are also able to set POIs. In my opinion, the best are those connected directly with KPIs, processes, and knowledge.
3. Do a self-examination.
You have to be honest with you and your employees. You are a mentor to them. You are responsible for their development. During the PE you should be ready for an open and honest conversation. You have to have prepared arguments for positive and negative feedback. You have to have examples that support your opinion. But nothing general. Present only detailed information. For example, ’I like your answer to a complaint from November 2016. You showed there a process of knowledge and empathy.’
4. Prepare a list of expectations and a list of goals for next year.
Do not mix it up with POI. Expectations are something more what would you receive from, and offer to your employees. I always underline that I wish more involvement in a team life. Innovations and thinking outside the box are my main expectations. I am asking for feedback about me and my work (if in the company there is only 180degrees PE). My list of expectations always consists of extra training and courses, more feedback sessions, more employment possibilities or organization of team-building events. I am always asking for a mentoring program. This is how I want to boost my leadership career. List of goals should be connected with KPIs and work that is required from your workers. This is a result of a job description and day-to-day performances.
5. Find enough time for the meeting.
You cannot be in a rush. Be sure that your employees have time as well. It is an advantage to plan in advance meeting with some time buffer. Do not forget that you can have so good meeting that it can take more time than planned. Actually, it would be also good for you to have only one PE during a day. Meeting like this is a vampire. Can take whole energy from you, if you know what I mean. Find a place where your employee and you both can feel comfortable. Be rested and open-minded. Take with you notes, pencils and water. Create friendly conditions for the PE session.
6. Present results.
This is the time for the PE. Time for your employee and you. Time for an open and honest conversation. In the beginning, say simple ’Thank you for coming to the meeting’. Furthermore present the agenda. ’First of all we will talk about results, then about expectations and in the end about points of improvement. Finally, we will also chat about your goals.’ The employee should know that this meeting is confidential, so he can be sure that it is only between him and you. What is not on the paper or promised to be added, will be not spread. You have to be ready for positive and negative feedback. This is also the appreciation time. Do not show highly extreme emotions. Do not scream, judge or cry. Create a feeling of equal partners that can talk about everything. At the end, you can also ask, how you can motivate your employee.
7. Sum up the PE.
Should I remind you, why the summary is so important? To verify all decisions. To assure your workers that everything that is important and will be not forgotten. Most probably you will provide also some deadlines. Remember to say also ’Thank you’ in the end. As your employee comes back to the responsibilities, you should write down the main points from the meeting. Prepare the meeting minutes.
Are you ready for Performance Evaluation meeting? I hope so, even more - I am sure you are aware of the company’s KPIs and values. PE session can bring also some kind of catharsis. Above all, it can also be a good time for a review of all POIs, goals and your relations with employees.