Nobody likes performance appraisals or performance reviews. Appraisals bring uncomfortable issues to light, reduce morale, and most employees scoff at the idea of being criticized for anything that may have been done imperfectly. Innovative managers must come up with an approach that looks beyond simple criticism, and becomes something more empowering. A great way to do that is to create a superior Performance Development Process, or PDP.
The unfortunate result of many performance appraisals is that managers spend a large chunk of their time trying to justify their company worth or value. This is what you want to avoid. After all, many of the most important things an employee does are not always measurable by tangible performance metrics. Effective managers can create an appraisal system that links an employee’s compensation to specific performance metrics.
Performance management systems can help managers achieve the real objective of staff development and company progress. Managers can choose to concentrate on the specific areas in which they want to see improvement and development.
Managers often feel that the employee review process is front loaded and time consuming. By creating a system to review all employees, managers can avoid many of the headaches involved with performance development meetings.
The following is a checklist that can help managers implement an overall performance management and employee review process.
- Identify job description and obligations
- Set realistic goals and associated metrics
- Determine job function priorities
- Create a calendar for manager and employee feedback sessions
- Create a tentative plan for action should employee not reach objectives
Performance Development Appraisal Meetings
First, a manager should schedule an appointment with the employee to discuss and review job performance. The manager should prepare for the PDP session by analyzing the employee’s work habits, up-to-date job performance, attendance records, and solicit input from colleagues. The employee should come prepared with a self assessment of work done on the job so far. It is also common for managers to ask for personal feedback in his own job performance.
At the PDP Meeting
Managers should set a designated area where all PDP meetings will take place. This can mean a conference room, personal office, or any other section of the office that can be cordoned off for privacy. Both the manager and employee should reach an early agreement about the meeting’s objectives. The manager should ask the employee to define both his personal and career goals, and what needs to be done to make them become a reality. Once these basic principles have been established, the manager needs to come up with some basic suggestions about how they can be achieved, and corresponding performance metrics for later evaluation. The employee and manager should also agree on a time in the future for a follow-up PDP meeting.