4 Performance Review Mistakes To Avoid

by Srikant Chellappa May 6,2019

The People Strategy Leaders Podcast

with Srikant Chellappa, CEO

Traditional performance reviews are frustrating for many an employee.

Employees are unhappy with them for quite a few different reasons, such as lack of feedback, lack of time, or even simply because they believe that performance reviews are unfair in general.

Though this skepticism might seem unfounded, it does not change the fact that performance reviews do suffer from a few fatal flaws. Or even if the process goes fine, the people running the process might hurt it. But, performance reviews when done right can greatly help an organization. And as such, it is important to get employees on board so that they too can reap the benefits of a good performance review process.

When beginning the performance review process at your organization, make sure to avoid these glaring mistakes

Not Informing Employees About the ‘Big Day’

This is one of the most terrible mistakes one could make with regards to performance reviews. Performance review meetings require prior preparation on part of both the manager and the employee. In the manager’s case, they have to review past work, lookup feedback they shared about the employee and recall a general performance graph as such.

In case of the employee, perhaps they would like to outline their plan for the new year, maybe seek feedback in areas where they struggled or even make a case for why they are ready for more responsibilities.

Therefore, it is important to inform employees in advance so that nobody goes in feeling like they have been thrown to the wolves.

Focusing Only On the Negatives

Never assume that employees don’t need to hear about the things that they do well. They absolutely need to know what they are doing well and what they are not doing well. Give them meaningful feedback where you appreciate them for their good work and point out their mistakes, giving them a chance to correct them.

And, if in case you have to have a serious talk with an employee about their performance, do it way before the review process. And during the review process, you and the employee can focus on creating a recovery plan or working on a Performance Improvement Plan.

Dominating The Conversation

A review meeting should be a two-way street, with efforts being made by both the parties. Do not dominate the conversation and prevent employees from sharing their inputs. It is important to recognize that both of you have completely different perspectives. During the conversation, it is possible you might discover various reasons behind both good and bad performance, but only if you take the time to listen. If you don’t allow the employees to provide self-evaluation and go on with your assumptions about their performance, the very purpose of performance reviews will be lost.

Absence of goals and plans

A performance review is not only about reviewing the past performance of employees. It is also about setting goals for the future and helping employees improve themselves based on past reviews. Having no goals or follow-up plans after performance review is simply bad form and negates the purpose of a review. 

Do you want to know more about improving performance reviews? Request a live demo and talk to our experts!

Srikant Chellappa
CEO & Co-Founder of Engagedly

Srikant Chellappa is the Co-Founder and CEO at Engagedly and is a passionate entrepreneur and people leader. He is an author, producer/director of 6 feature films, a music album with his band Manchester Underground, and is the host of The People Strategy Leaders Podcast. He is currently working on his next book, Ikigai at the Workplace, which is slated for release in the fall of 2024.

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