10 Effective Performance Review Phrases for Goal-Oriented Employees

Performance reviews are necessary tools to maximize the workforce in any workplace. However, the question is how to do them right to achieve the expected result. This article conveys some of the core points about performance review comments and shares effective phrases you can use in your next review.

Why Are Performance Reviews Important?

Why Are Performance Reviews Important

Performance reviews serve different purposes for employers and their employees.

A performance review allows your employer to perform a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis on you.

As an employee, performance review comments allow you to see how you are faring, highlight areas of improvement, and set new career goals. 

Other vital reasons for conducting performance reviews include the following:

For employee development

Companies with good work cultures seek to improve their employees by making continuous learning accessible for everyone. Performance reviews give insight into areas of improvement for each employee, making training sessions more personalized.

Improved employee engagement and loyalty

Performance review comments clarify company goals and how your efforts contribute to them, which keep you engaged and motivated. This increased engagement is also said to positively affect employee retention, productivity, and satisfaction.


Performance reviews are repeatable. This allows management to easily document each performance review session for cross-referencing and track employee growth over time.

Also Read: Guide to select the right Performance Review Software

How to Develop Performance Review Goals for Employees

Develop Performance Review Goals

Before conducting any performance review, it is essential to create goals using the Objectives and Key Results, OKR methodology. This helps guide the results.

OKR software is a goal-setting method used to develop and implement business goals within the set timeframe. It also helps employees in building the right strategies for their goals. How? OKR software tracks your progress, encourages collaboration, improves coordination and communication, and provides insights into where and what areas you need to focus on. 

Without these Objectives and Key Results for your performance review, it will be nearly impossible to know what to look for, where to poke, and how to determine when they are met.

Other reasons for setting performance review goals are to:

  • Set expectations
  • Improve productivity and work ownership
  • Ensure the review process is bias-free and completely objective

Fortunately, several versions of OKR software are available. Here are some guidelines on using OKR software to develop your performance review goals.

Develop goals

The most effective way of developing OKRs is to start from the top down. This means starting with organizational goals and going down to departmental goals, then to individual goals. As you go down the hierarchy, your goals become more defined and actionable. 

Specify key results

While your objectives define what you want to achieve, your key results detail your hows. Each objective should have at least three key results you hope to achieve or actions you want to take to accomplish those results. 

The goals and key results you set with your performance management software should be:

  • Simple and realistic
  • Specific
  • Prioritize goals and key results
  • Make your key results measurable
Also Read: The Ultimate Guide To 30-60-90 Day Performance Review and Templates

Performance Review Phrases Examples

Your performance review is around the corner, and despite being a model employee, you are unsure of what to expect. We have curated 10 effective performance reviews (5 for strengths and 5 for weaknesses) phrases for different work areas that you will find helpful in your review.

Teamwork and interpersonal skillsTeamwork and interpersonal skills


  • Performs well during teamwork
  • Can communicate effectively with diverse teammates from various cultural and educational backgrounds
  • Attentive to verbal and non-verbal cues
  • Handles conflict appropriately 
  • Collaborates ideas with teammates


  • Becomes defensive with constructive criticism
  • Plays everything too close to the vest
  • Prone to procrastination 
  • Does not implement constructive criticism from teammates
  • Fails to gain clarity of communication with peers

Customer serviceCustomer service


  • Can handle demanding customers with grace
  • Is empathic
  • Projects a friendly image and tone
  • Great rapport with customers
  • Skillful at convincing customers to change their minds


  • Does not listen well to customers
  • Poor non-verbal communication skills
  • Uses inappropriate language and attitude with customers
  • Does not promote the business to customers
  • Gets irritable with long-running customer relations

Time management


  • Always on time for meetings and work
  • Effectively manages large tasks without supervision
  • Reliable with time-sensitive tasks
  • Extends deadlines with good reason
  • Shows excellent results in record time


  • Tends to prolong deadlines
  • Unable to prioritize tasks
  • Always misses the company attendance mark
  • Has not worked well on numerous projects
  • Is frequently late to work

Motivation and willingness to improveMotivation and willingness to improve


  • Constantly seeks professional development opportunities
  • Takes calculated risks
  • Seeks and develops more effective ways to complete tasks
  • Seeks clarity when assigned new responsibilities
  • Exceeds expectations from previous goals


  • Is unwilling to take on more responsibilities
  • Lacks the drive to improve
  • Is risk-averse and closed-minded to change
  • Overzealous and steps on toes to achieve their goals
  • Only takes the initiative when prompted

Understanding of one’s responsibilities


  • Deeply understand the responsibilities and expectations for the role
  • Adept in all areas of the role’s responsibilities
  • Shares knowledge and insight with peers
  • Develop best practices that can make tasks more efficient


  • Little understanding of the responsibilities and expectations for the role
  • Does not express mastery in the basic concepts associated with the role
  • Produces low-quality deliverables
  • Creates unnecessary and repetitive errors



  • Comes up with innovative ideas to solve problems
  • Uses techniques in problem-solving but still open to new methodologies
  • Able to handle the gravity of the problem at hand
  • Deeply understands the problem and its implications


  • Does not take action when a problem arises
  • Does not understand the problem and its implications
  • Cannot efficiently use resources to solve problems



  • Discovers ways to creatively solve problems and optimize processes
  • Contributes fresh and innovative ideas to meetings and huddles
  • Gives suggestions to the business that can be implemented in the long term


  • Frequently has a negative reaction issue requiring innovative thinking
  • Does not offer creative solutions to problems
  • Does not see the need to propose innovative ideas to the business as a whole

Flexibility and adaptabilityFlexibility and adaptability


  • Can easily adapt to changes within the workplace
  • Accepts constructive criticism and does not look at it as a personal attack
  • Calm under pressure
  • Is a great team player


  • Unable to excel at tasks that need flexibility
  • Is too uptight when it comes to changes
  • Seems uninterested in new roles and duties
  • Views constructive criticism as a personal attack



  • Is an active and effective listener
  • Provides helpful feedback to peers
  • Can explain thoughts and issues clearly
  • Willing to entertain others’ ideas


  • Fails to alert the necessary people regarding issues
  • Makes peers feel afraid to express opinions or suggest ideas
  • Does not listen to others
  • Often humiliates and condescends to peers



  • Always able to meet or exceed expectations on identified goals during the last performance review
  • Sets realistic goals and is able to achieve them
  • Adds value to the business by becoming a valuable member of the team who puts out quality work
  • Still strives to look for areas of improvement on their own


  • Failure to meet expectations and goals set during the last performance review
  • Is satisfied with producing average or below-average quality work
  • Uninterested and not concerned with improving themselves
  • Does not take initiative unless told to do so


These performance review comments are but a few of the many phrases you may encounter during your next performance review. However, they should help you understand how you are doing. With these, you can determine how to use the OKR software available to you to set new goals given your next performance review.

Performance Management Tool

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. What do you write in a performance review goal?


Ans. In a performance review goal, you should:

  1. Set Clear Objectives: Define specific, achievable goals.
  2. Be Specific: Use measurable targets and deadlines.
  3. Focus on Improvement: Address areas for growth and development.
  4. Align with Company Goals: Ensure goals support the organization’s objectives.
  5. Provide Support: Offer resources and guidance to help the employee succeed.

Writing performance review goals this way helps employees improve and contribute to the company’s success.

Q2. What are the 3 main evaluation goals?

Ans. The three main evaluation goals are:

  1. Assessment: To measure an individual or process’s performance.
  2. Feedback: Providing constructive input for improvement.
  3. Decision-Making: Supporting choices and actions based on evaluation results.

These goals help in understanding, enhancing, and making informed decisions in various contexts.

Q3. What is a SMART goal in performance review?

Ans. A SMART goal in a performance review is:

  • Specific: Clearly defined and focused.
  • Measurable: Can be quantified to track progress.
  • Achievable: Realistic and attainable within the employee’s capabilities.
  • Relevant: Pertinent to the employee’s role and the company’s objectives.
  • Time-bound: Has a defined timeframe for completion.

SMART goals help in setting clear, effective targets for employee performance and development.

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Why Your Business Needs A High Performance Culture Framework

In the relentless pursuit of excellence, businesses today are increasingly recognizing the transformative power of a well-crafted High-Performance Culture Framework. In an era defined by innovation, agility, and fierce competition, cultivating a workplace culture that not only thrives but excels is not merely an aspiration; it’s a necessity.

Picture a workplace where every employee is not just meeting expectations but consistently surpassing them. Imagine a culture that fuels creativity, drives innovation, and propels your organization toward unprecedented growth. This is the promise of a High-Performance Culture Framework, and it’s why your business cannot afford to overlook its profound significance.

In this article, we embark on a journey into the dynamic real-time of high-performance culture, with a laser focus on why your business needs a well-defined framework to cultivate and sustain it. Whether you’re a startup striving to make your mark or a seasoned corporation aiming to stay at the forefront of your industry, understanding the pivotal role of this framework is the first step toward unlocking your organization’s full potential.

Throughout our exploration, we’ll delve into the core principles, benefits, and practical implementation of a High-Performance Culture Framework. By the time we conclude, you’ll not only appreciate the imperative of integrating it into your business strategy but also be equipped with the knowledge to propel your company into an era of unparalleled success.

So, fasten your seatbelts as we navigate the compelling landscape of high-performance culture, where the High-Performance Culture Framework is the key that can unlock the doors to excellence, innovation, and growth within your organization. Your journey to fostering a culture of exceptional performance begins right here.

Also Read: Top 10 Performance Management Software of 2023
Why Your Business Needs a “High Performance Culture Framework
Also Read: The 4 Stages of Performance Cycle

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Why is building performance culture important in an organization?

Ans. Building a performance culture is vital for organizations as it drives employee motivation, improves productivity, fosters innovation, and enhances overall business success. It aligns teams with company goals and ensures sustained growth in a competitive landscape.

Q2. How To Create A High-Performance Culture?

Ans. Creating a High-Performance Culture involves setting clear expectations, promoting open communication, offering regular feedback, investing in employee development, and recognizing achievements. It requires a strategic and sustained effort to foster excellence and drive success within an organization.

Q3. What is a high-performance culture framework?

Ans. A High-Performance Culture Framework is a structured approach that defines values, expectations, and strategies to cultivate excellence, innovation, and success within an organization. It serves as a roadmap for aligning workforce behavior with company objectives and fostering a culture of exceptional performance.

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Performance Management Tricks for Successful Partner Management

The success of your business partners has a great impact on the success of your own business. And contrary to what you may think, their performance is well within your control. Learn what performance management can do and then apply the knowledge to your own business through these tricks for successful partner management.

The importance of successful performance management

There’s a reason performance management has become an integral part of business. It involves setting goals, gathering data and analyzing that data to improve future performance. And with that kind of effort, the potential for success is much greater than it is otherwise.

In fact, businesses with successful performance management systems routinely outperform their competitors. According to Betterworks, companies that have implemented changes in the way they provide performance feedback have a 24 percent higher success rate than those that stick to traditional models.

But of course, not every performance management system is either cost-effective or viable. A study conducted by Gartner shows us exactly how easy it can be to make the wrong moves. For example, the average time managers spend on work related to performance management is 210 hours a year. 

So how do you develop a performance management system that will help you make the most out of your partnerships?

There are a few tricks you can employ to make sure your performance management system is the one that will bring you the best possible results. 

Also read: What is performance management system?

Choosing potential partners

Performance management can start even before you partner with another business. After all, one of the major elements of success, in any field of work, is being able to plan ahead. So instead of focusing on your existing partners, why not increase your chances of success by making sure you only choose the partners that are a great fit for your business? 

How do you do that? You gather all the necessary information on the prospective partner and you ask yourself a few questions regarding your potential partnership. A business that would be a great fit for you will:

  • Share your business’ target audience
  • Be okay with your terms and processes
  • Boast a stable business model
  • Be technically equipped to deliver results
  • Share your business’ values

Maybe it’s not necessary for the potential partner to check all the boxes, but it’s a great thing to strive for. And the more boxes they check, the more successful your collaboration will be and the less work you’ll have managing their performance.

Offering incentives & training programs

When you think about performance management, the first thing that comes to mind are yearly reviews. The employee or the partner has already done the work and now it’s time for you to evaluate it. But you don’t need to limit yourself to a purely reactionary way of doing things when there are plenty of actions you can take as well. 

Of course, here we’re talking about incentive programs. These make for an excellent way to steer your partners into the right direction even before they’ve done anything. Instead of waiting a year to tell them they should be achieving better results, incentivize them to excel right from the start. 

But a quality incentive program will do you no good if your partners aren’t trained to meet your requirements. Luckily, there are partner training programs that allow you to onboard and train all your partners in a way that’s highly efficient and even lowers your operational costs. Using this type of software is yet another way to be proactive about your performance management.

Constantly checking the progress

To make the most out of your performance management system, you need to come to terms with the fact that conducting yearly reviews simply doesn’t work. It’s an outdated system that many Forbes 500 companies have stopped using. 

What should you do instead? When developing your performance management system, you should aim for implementing continuous performance evaluation. The exact process will, of course, depend on your business. But to give a few examples, this could mean anything from evaluating performance whenever necessary or possible, to measure it at the end of every individual project or campaign. 

Why does this make for a better approach? It’s in line with the latest advances in the way project management, in general, is done. We’re talking about the so-called agile methodology, which has proven itself a lot more efficient than traditional project management. It’s been argued that this is simply because this methodology is aimed at breaking processes up into shorter phases and getting feedback as soon as they’re complete. As a result, there are fewer deviations from the end goal.

Also read: Performance Review Phrases And Wordings 2022

Setting expectations

Of course, checking the progress your partners are making can only result in true success if you keep them in the loop. So if you want your performance management system to work, you need to be able to explain it to your partners, and informing them about it should be part of your process. 

To be able to explain your evaluation process, it needs to be structured. You need to know what events trigger evaluation, how the process is done and which members of your team are responsible for it. But what’s more important than anything, you need to be able to explain to your partners exactly what they need to do to pass the process with flying colors. 

This is where the concept of SMART goals can prove extremely helpful. SMART goals is an acronym that stands for goals that are:

  • Specific 
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Relevant
  • Timely 

And if the expectations you set for your partners check all the above boxes, there will be no uncertainties as to what they need to do to achieve a successful collaboration with you.

Consistent feedback and rewards

If you want your partners to perform as you need them to, it’s important to keep them engaged. One aspect of this is providing regular and consistent feedback. The other aspect is to reward them whenever they do something right. After all, a partner that doesn’t feel like they’re out of the loop and one that feels appreciated will almost surely become a valuable asset to your company.


There’s a lot of good that a quality performance management can do for your business. From choosing your partners wisely to keeping them constantly engaged, a smart, structured, and transparent system brings you closer to making the most out of your partnerships.

Want to know how Engagedly can help enhance your organization’s performance management? Fix a quick demo with our experts.

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About the Author:

Lianna Arakelyan - Guest blogger

Lianna Arakelyan is a content writer at Kademi.co, with a knack for B2B programs, such as channel incentive programs, partner training and onboarding programs and not only. She is extreme in her work, with a deep goal of always being updated on online and offline marketing and technology news of the world.

The Ultimate Guide to Agile Performance Management Process

The performance management system is a process that many companies have been using over some decades now. It has undergone many changes so that managers can get a better understanding of the employees’ productivity and achievements. However, recently, forward-thinking companies have redirected their perspectives and have adopted the Agile Performance Management process. It is reliable and is considered as a best practice for grading the performance of employees and gaining an insight into their contribution toward a company’s progress.

Why did the need for Agile Performance Management arise?

The need for Agile Performance Management arose as workplaces no longer wanted to follow a hierarchical top-down structure and wanted to adopt an open and collaborative work environment wherein employees, managers, and higher management can join forces to achieve the set objectives. 

Another reason for the adoption of this process being, employees preferred to develop their own individual objectives, aligned with the company’s objectives. They didn’t prefer the idea of working as per the objective checklist handed over to them.

If you’re one of those companies looking out for gaining an understanding of the Agile Performance Management process, and it’s working and benefits, then this blog post would help you.

Read Also: What is Continuous Performance Management (CPM)?

Understanding the workings of Agile Performance Management

Agile Performance Management was created for a new era that is more communicative, efficient, and social. It focuses more on frequent employee performance discussions throughout the year as compared to conventional reviews, which are conducted annually or bi-annually.

The unique feature of this is that it incorporates the concept of frequent performance discussions–on a quarterly or mid-yearly basis. This helps in addressing various problems faced by the employees and how they can be guided to overcome the challenges and be aligned with a company objectives.

Another great aspect of Agile Performance Management is that it is based on the process of achieving an objective rather than solely focusing on annual performance ratings and outcomes.

This approach of frequent discussions with the employees and helping them to overcome their barriers helps to cultivate a robust and meaningful relationship among employees and managers.

What factors differentiate Agile Performance Management from a traditional system?

Given below are some factors that differentiate an Agile Performance Management system from a traditional performance management process.

Improves the existing process: Agile Performance Management system scores over a traditional system because of its ability to improve the existing process and help employees to overcome the challenges related to their work. 

Frequent discussion to solve problems: Unlike a conventional system that focuses on annual appraisal and midyear review, Agile Performance Management happens quarterly or bi-yearly. As a result, it immediately helps to identify different employees’ issues in a short span and fix them. It saves time and employees can focus on the work, rather than sulking and getting bogged down by existing problems.

Employees usually use the review processes to express their opinions and concerns. Using a traditional performance management system, addressing the concerns of the employees may or may not be only possible during an annual performance review. Till then, employees will have to wait to share their problems with their managers or higher management. 

Systematic and meaningful: Another concerning area of a traditional performance management system is that a lot has to be understood in a few sessions that happen once a year. To elaborate, managers have to identify employees’ capability to meet the company’s objectives; employees’ effectiveness in aligning themselves with the company’s goals; their behavior or competencies; their personal development, and their career aspiration – everything in one to two conversations. To achieve these agendas in a single meeting or a string of meetings in two days may not be possible, rendering pressure on the employees and turning the whole activity to be a ​‘tick-box’ exercise.

Agile performance management allows the discussions to take place periodically and eliminates rushed discussions that are meaningless.

Flexibility: Since the traditional performance management process is based on fixed outcomes or rigid grading systems, without in-depth analysis, conducted annually, the management may not get a proper understanding of employees’ performance; challenges, and their efforts to meet the objectives. 

Compared to this, the Agile Performance Management system focuses on near-term goals, most commonly, monthly or quarterly goals, which ensure that all potential hindrances are eliminated during the manager-employee conversation and employees stay abreast with the shifting priorities of the business.

Interestingly, employees derive larger benefits because of this system as it focuses on employees’ development, and quicker feedback implementation. A completely opposite process takes place in the case of a traditional performance management system, as there is a time gap between the performance review and feedback process.

Also Read: How Continuous Feedback Improves Performance Reviews

Success stats of Agile Performance Management

Almost every employee in the current era does not favor annual performance reviews. Because of the annual performance review, employees’ stress level may increase substantially and companies may witness employee turnover. In fact, companies observed a high percentage of voluntary attrition after annual reviews. Reversely, once they adopted agile performance management, they witnessed a 30 percent decrease in voluntary turnover.

95 percent of managers are discontented with their conventional performance management systems, citing their inaccuracy for performance evaluations.

IBM’s Smarter Workforce Institute (SMW) research shows that most workers “react favorably” to the adaptability and openness of Agile Performance Management.

Deloitte’s research indicates that organizations that maintain a col­lab­o­ra­tive atmosphere are profitable and twice as likely to outperform their competitors.

Implementing the process in a smart way

We advocate the following strategies to set off your Agile Performance Management process to a successful start:

Getting employees to trust the new performance review system: The management should build trust among employees regarding the new performance management process, before replacing the traditional performance management process. For the same, the management should discuss the large scope of the Agile Performance Management System and the wide range of benefits it offers. 

Besides, the employees should be made to understand the need for the company to make a transition from the conventional performance management process to Agile Performance Management System. Transparency and frequent discussion to solve the problems of the employees should be emphasized while discussing the benefits of this Process.

Training: Employees cannot be expected to understand the Agile Performance Management system in a day or two, as it requires a total change in the thinking and behavior of the employees. It would be preposterous if a company expects the employees to shift to the new system without any form of training. This is one of the reasons why adequate training should be provided to the managers and the employees while shifting from a traditional performance management system to their Agile performance management process. The training should be comprehensive and should answer all the queries and concerns of the participants.

Setting Goals:

A company’s primary goals should be communicated to the workforce in a detailed and non-hurried manner, an essential step not to be overlooked.

The managers and employees should set quarterly goals and how they would achieve those goals as per the Agile Performance Management system. The goal should be set in such a way that every required step is well defined. The discussion should involve the elaborate techniques to measure the outcomes. Thus, aligned with the goals, employees will have to meet a set target every month.

Managers will play an important role in helping the employees to meet the set target every month. Managers will provide feedback to the employees as when they feel it is necessary. All these action plans ensure the goals set out are relevant, realistic, attainable, and thoroughly understood by employees. If required, the managers can suggest ways such as upgrading existing skills in order to enhance employees’ knowledge and skill set.

Explaining opportunities and career development: Employees will happily accept the Agile Performance Management system if it is going to be beneficial for them and provide new opportunities for career development.

Assessing adoption of this system: Conduct a regular assessment of the new system to understand how well this system has been accepted by the employees. In case there is low adoption, find out the reasons behind it and address the concerns of the employees so that they will embrace it at the earliest.

Why most companies are opting for the Agile Performance Management system?

An Agile Performance Management strategy involves employees in a continuous, year-round process of personal growth. Employees actively take part in developing their abilities in ways that positively affect themselves and the organization.

Meanwhile, a company preserves or enhances its employee capabilities as business requirements evolve. By using the Agile workforce management system, businesses may have employees working toward common goals and boosting productivity. The Agile Performance Management System results in less turnover, increased employee engagement, and higher earnings.

How this system benefits an organization?

Transitioning to an Agile Performance Management system yields substantial advantages on several fronts.

Benefits at the individual level:

At the one-on-one level, Agile Performance Management enhances everyday performance and enables managers to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the employees in real-time. Developing a routine of regular check-ins enables employees to communicate problems and work impediments to their managers, who serve as coaches to assist them in overcoming obstacles. The managers can also provide team members with feedback and instructions aimed at achieving continual improvement.

Reevaluating organizational goals: This system focuses on a frequent reporting and feedback loop process to promote organizational goal awareness. As a result, executives and employees are made aware of OKRs regularly and, over time, everyone knows their goals, resulting in greater employee engagement and productivity.

Benefits at the team level:

At the team level, Agile Performance Management provides team leaders with a more accurate perspective of the team’s capabilities. This makes it possible for the team to shift gears when business objectives change. 

Facilitates enhanced team collaboration: With the Agile system in place, managers may concentrate on guiding and instructing employees to complete work on schedule and within budget. Team members become more dependable contributors, which strengthens the team as a whole.

Performance data:

Agile performance management generates significant amounts of performance data at the enterprise level, enabling Human Resources to monitor organizational capabilities. These data help to identify a benchmark of the workforce’s strengths and shortcomings. In fact, they serve as a crucial starting point for building talent strategies and advancing company objectives.

Agile Performance Management takes a company’s productivity to an altogether different level, as employees become self-aware of the required commitments and witness personal development.

Also Read: 13 Ways to Use HR Data to Improve Decision-Making

Agile Performance Management tools to implement Agile process correctly and easily

Implementing this process necessitates a shift from the old annual reporting approach to a more comprehensive, engaging, and quicker Agile culture. Employing this process incorrectly might pour cold water on the entire effort. 

Thus, it makes sense to make use of digitized HR software such as Engagedly solution to ensure the Agile Performance Management process is implemented properly, with no hassles.

Engagedly solution helps managers to track their employees’ progress and milestone achievements and facilitates the exchange of real-time feedback, in line with this process. Also, incorporating Agile training for transitioning to a more dynamic performance management process is pivotal. To guarantee its seamless execution and leverage its benefits effectively, integrating digitized HR software like Engagedly is imperative. This solution empowers managers to navigate the evolving landscape, ensuring streamlined progress tracking, milestone accomplishments, and real-time feedback exchange, thus amplifying the success of Agile Performance Management. 

Want to know how Engagedly can help you mange your hybrid employees better? Request us for a demo.

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