Tips For Making Performance Appraisals More Productive

The most hated talent management process is the performance appraisal. It’s one of the few processes that both leaders and direct reports dread.  Unfortunately, most HR policies require this annual ritual that is cumbersome and expensive.  HR experts estimate that the cost of preparing a performance appraisal is about $2,500 per employee per year. This cost includes the time required for preparation, meeting, and recovery (yes, direct reports need time to recover from this traumatic experience).

With all the evidence showing the ineffectiveness of formal performance appraisals, we are flabbergasted HR influencers insist leaders continue to conduct formal appraisals.  We recommend informal quarterly performance reviews but realize most leaders are still required to prepare formal performance appraisals.

Here are some tips to make the performance appraisal process more effective:

  • deliver a copy of the appraisal to the direct report before the meeting to give them a chance to digest the feedback (this reduces the uncertainty the direct report feels);
  • have the direct report complete the performance appraisal form on themselves in advance to exchange when you provide the copy to them (this creates a sense of fairness);
  • meet someplace other than the boss’ office (this reduces the status a boss holds);
  • avoid meeting on a Friday (the extra time for boss and direct report to interact before the weekend allows for the relationship to be re-established);
  • discuss compensation adjustments in a different meeting (this keeps the focus on performance).

Empower your leaders to conduct smarter performance appraisals, and you’ll experience more success.

Explore posts in the same categories: Leadership, Performance Acceleration

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