Thursday, December 21, 2006

How to make up a Successful Performance Appraisals?

Performance appraisals of employees can often be one of the most challenging functions a manager may have. It is also happens to be one of the most important. Conducting a well organized and professional performance appraisal can often make a huge difference in turning around problem employees, as well as encouraging good or even average workers to perform at their best.

All too often are the stories of managers that used employee performance appraisals only as a way to be critical of an underachieving employee's shortcomings. Or - even worse, managers that put off employee performance appraisals for many months, leaving the employee with strong feelings that they, and the work they perform, are not very important to the manager or the company.
A variety of industry experts have looked at what elements make up a successful and productive employee appraisal.
These elements include:
  • Conducting the performance appraisal in a timely fashion, as close as possible, or even before the employee's scheduled review date.
  • Offering a balanced evaluation of both the employee's strengths and of their weakness
  • Including a review of key performance areas or projects where an employee has performed well. A bit of praise can go a long way to lifting an employee's morale and feelings of success on the job.
  • Making any criticisms of the employee's work in a productive way. Focus on ways the employee can improve or do a better job. Don't overly dwell on the negatives.
  • Natural interaction during the performance appraisal process - give the employee a chance to speak their mind as well as help come up with future goals, as well as steer areas of improvement.
  • Set goals for the next appraisal period that are quantifiable and achievable. If you have specific projects in mind use those as a measure of the performance. If you made a list of goals from the last review period, go over these with the employee as well and talk about how the employee achieved or failed to achieve the goals and why.
  • Always maintain a professional demeanor and don't let any discussion get personal.

Don't tie the employees performance to a salary increase. It is normal for the employee to expect that a review will also include an increase as this is traditional, but you should clearly state that the review is about performance and not about salary.

Although these are just the basics of how to successfully perform an employee performance appraisal, and they may seem obvious at first glance, many managers still miss the basics, leading to strained employee relations, morale and dedication to the job.

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