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6 Effective Performance Review Tips for Managers

Do you want your employees to fully understand their strengths and actively work on their weaknesses instead of resenting what you told them in performance review meetings?

The 6 performance review tips below are exactly what you need to conduct successful and respectful feedback conversations.

1. Be well-prepared

As a manager, you should proactively prepare for the performance review by carefully gathering all necessary documents and stuff. Some things to prepare include:

Fill out the assessment details

The job evaluation will include your assessment criteria, comments on employees’ work. To make the meeting more effective, you should fairly appraise your subordinates’ fulfillment in each task and give accurate and detailed comments upon his/her strengths, weaknesses, and achievements during his/her work.

Prepare pens and notebooks for the meeting

You will want to prepare notebooks and pens beforehand in case your staff has feedback, reviews, suggestions, or requests during the assessment.

It would be best if you also reminded your employees to prepare their pens and notebooks in advance to jot down important information, which you might share with them during the meeting.

Prepare the right time and place

The time of the performance review meeting should be flexible and suitable for both you and your staff. You need to determine how long the assessment should last, what you need to say, and ensure the meeting will not exceed the pre-set time.

Also, the meeting venue should be professional and quiet with good soundproofing. An ideal place is probably the meeting room or your private office.

prepare the right time and place for performance review

2. Be frank but don’t be mean

You may worry your employees feel hurt by negative evaluations in performance assessments. However, frankness will help them find out their weaknesses and strengths.

When commenting on employees’ weak points and making contributions to their work performance, you should use gentle, moderate, friendly and specific words along with constructive solutions.

Some recommendations might be: “How you choose the topic sometimes doesn’t follow the original concept” or “I think with this topic, you should adjust your writing style in a fun way, or you can add quotes to enrich your post.”

Or if your employee is having trouble learning new work tools, you should suggest him, or her directly ask for help from colleagues who are experts in that field.

Avoid taking disdain, using offensive words, or belittling employees. Some managers assume this is a way to motivate their staff, but it isn’t.

Some disrespectful judgments might be: “I find what you do is too terrible”; “Don’t ever write those trash articles and send them for approval” or “I don’t understand what all this stupid mess you create is for.”

Those judgments only prove impoliteness and rudeness. The harsh words that offend employees also make them feel hurt and depressed instead of trying to do better.

Besides, you should clearly share your expectations with staff during the performance review meetings. This motivates them to know what they need to do in the future to maintain and promote work efficiency, and makes them feel they are trustful and vital to their managers.

3. Calm your staff down before the performance review

Two weeks before the performance review, ask your staff to write down what they have done and have been proud of over the past few weeks. It will create a pleasant atmosphere for the meeting, and reduce the stress that bothers your staff at the same time.

Consult feedback from people who have been working with that employee to hear comments and evaluations on that staff’s ability in the most objective way.

One hour before the review, you should send the assessment soft file to your subordinates so they can prepare themselves and stay calm in the meeting.

4. Let your employees question you

The performance evaluation is not a one-way meeting for managers to review employees’ work. It’s an excellent opportunity to listen to your staff’s feelings and contributions about everything that happens during his/her working time.

Instead of role-playing a “monologue” throughout the meeting, you should encourage subordinates to share their ideas and thoughts by asking a few questions below:

Do you think your assessment is correctly stated? Do you want to edit or add anything?

During the working process, do I need to improve anything to be a better manager?

Do you encounter any problems with your work?

Do you have any suggestions or requests to improve your current work?

questions are a good source for performance review

5. Be a good listener

You’d better focus on listening to what your employees share. Note down all key points your staff tells to make any new adjustments then. Moreover, you can base on those ideas to improve your management style if it’s necessary.

Don’t superficially react to your employee’s talk by saying “OK, OK” during the meeting and then forget everything they say.Enrich your answers with some more sympathetic responses such as: “I understand”, “I think you are right”, “I will consider this”, “I really know what you mean.” And make changes if needed.

6. Draw the future orientation out

A performance review meeting can be an excellent time to decide whether to continue or stop cooperating with some employees. It would help if you clarified your decision so that he/she can prepare for himself/herself and the future.

If both you and your employees continue working together, you should share the next direction and plans that the company will stick to. Also, clarify the upcoming tasks your staff must undertake.

Those tasks will be similar to what they are doing, or they will have to take on new missions, receive new training courses, etc.

Remember to ask if your subordinates are willing to take on new assignments or training.

If you want to terminate a contract with an employee, you should clearly explain why you make such a decision. Also, if you intend to end someone’s agreement ahead of time, you must consider your words, so it doesn’t hurt him/her. You can also suggest introducing that staff to a new company if they wish.

draw the future orientation out is a good way for performance review

Performance reviews don’t end when your employees leave the meeting. After then, it will be time for both you and your staff to review your assessments and notes to improve drawbacks, develop strengths, and continue to work on your plan.

Whether you are a senior manager, who’s been familiar with performance review sessions already, or you’ve just got to know this process, these 6 notes are critical. Record and apply them soon in the next evaluation period. Surely after the performance review meeting, you can foster interaction and cultivate mutual empathy with your employees.Don’t know what to write in your performance review reports? We’ve got 340 phrases and more listed out for you.

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