For anyone who worked through the last three or four decades, the annual performance review, or performance appraisal review, was an event that inspired dread and anxiety. It was a call to the manager’s office where he reviewed your work performance based on your job description, often ranking you on a scale from 1 to 5 of how you met specific performance objectives.
The very word ‘ratings’ is polarizing, especially in the context of performance appraisal forms. But like any aspect of performance appraisals, ratings have both pros and cons.
Ratings can be very helpful in the sense that they can quickly help you categorize and sort an employee’s skill sets. They can help show an employee the areas in which he or needs more improvement. They can also be used to boost employee morale and motivate them to better.
I was recently talking to a friend about her annual performance appraisal. It had been delayed for a while and my friend was getting antsy. She was worried about the fact that the lateness did not bode well for her career, or it meant that the security of her job was in danger. Actually, it was because the year before; the company had grown massively in size. And managers had teams that suddenly ballooned in size. The delay was because managers were struggling to marshal their own thoughts and manage newly expanded teams while simultaneously doing their own work. Sound’s nightmarish doesn’t it?
Here is a very common complaint about feedback by employees. They find the feedback their managers give them to be insufficient.
Nobody wants an entire day’s worth of detailed feedback. However, it is very demoralizing for an employee to go in for their annual performance review and then come away barely 5 minutes later with a sense of discontent.