5 Things for Year-End Performance Reviews

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, President of Put Another Way.

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Performance reviews are dreaded by both management and employee. Each feels the weight of the process and experiences trepidations at the amount of time it takes to perform this one on one review.

Years ago, working for a Fortune 100 company, the process was strict, the documentation exhausting and the flexibility was zero. There had to be a better way. I took the best from the performance reviews I experienced in the past and utilized many of the suggested platforms below.

Here are some creative ways and thoughts on performance reviews:

Do it quarterly! I never understood waiting until the end of the year to discuss an employee’s performance. Whether good or bad…don’t wait.

Self-Assessment. This is a common format allowing the employee to self-assess and discuss successes, challenges, and areas for improvement. Management reviews and adds comments and suggestions for the upcoming year. Keep it short.

Skip level reviews. These can be effective and very eye opening. The subordinates and/or sometimes peers of the employee can review the employee either in a conversational written review or a structured question review. This works best for managers and upper level executives.

Performance review by objectives. Here the management team will set a list of objectives focusing on many aspects of the employee’s job. This could include managing expenses, performance goals, or job specific tasks. This type of performance may need to be completed after year end as the close of business figures may be required for the review.

Unwritten, verbal review. This one is a little touchy because there is no paper trail of the review. A summary of the conversations can be drafted and approved and signed off by both management and employee.

No matter how you review your employees, be fair and speak to them clearly and with a purpose. Be prepared and carve out time only for them, no interruptions.

We have all been reviewed by a manager that did not know how to execute a performance review. Need help or suggestions on how to conduct performance reviews? 

The Capital Region Chamber offers numerous classes and seminars through their BuisnessU Program. Check out their website and sign up for seminars and training here.

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