The short answer is: Don’t do them unless you know exactly how. An annual performance review can easily waste a week of the employees time.
The actual conversation takes only a couple of hours. But the days leading up to it and after it are far from efficient.
Before the review people are nervous about what will be said. And the days after it are spent complaining about what was said (or understood). Unless you change the meaning of the review.
When you hear “annual performance review” do you link more positive or negative thoughts to it? Odds are you think of ten ways it can be unfair, unpleasant, and/or a waste of time.
The only way you can get the best results from the annual performance reviews is if you change its meaning. This change is essentially a change in company culture.
The best managers give feedback every day. Most of the feedback is positive. A simple, “Thanks, you did a good job with *blank*” is enough. This constant feedback builds mutual trust and creates an open line of communication.
When the time of the annual performance review comes it’s not negative. It’s a chance to build a stronger relationship. And both parties can learn from it.
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