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Performance Reviews: A Love-Hate Story

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Performance Management

Ah, performance reviews. Over the years they have waxed and waned in popularity; employers and employees alike find them time-consuming and perhaps even a bit awkward. But, after scrapping a performance review program, employers often find they have accidentally created an information void and miss the opportunity to reconnect with their employees, offer feedback, and gain valuable insight. Let’s take a closer look at the many benefits of performance reviews. Keep in mind, it is a balancing act to create a performance appraisal program that makes a difference for your company performance.

Benefits for Employees

A meaningful performance review is a valuable tool for employees, both in terms of sharing their own thoughts as well as receiving feedback. A key part of this is the opportunity for employees to share their career development goals or struggles. Doing so allows managers to make decisions accordingly, such as assigning tasks that align with each employee’s goals (where possible).

Though we always recommend that feedback is given and received on a regular basis, a planned performance review meeting allows all parties to reflect and prepare. It provides a forum for the reviewer to give constructive guidance, while also allowing the employee to participate in the discussion.

Whereby, a performance review meeting gives the employee an opportunity to share strengths and successes, along with any concerns they may have – even something as straightforward as concerns regarding heating/cooling issues, noise complaints, desks, tools, etc. In the absence of an Employee Satisfaction Survey, a well-conducted annual review meeting gives the employee a good opportunity to provide feedback on these matters, highlighting what really matters.

Benefits for Employers

For employers, scheduled performance reviews create a feedback loop of information, allowing for continuous process improvement across all business areas. On the individual level, it gives managers more insight into the skills and knowledge present in their team. A smart manager will know how to leverage this information to propel their performance forward.

If completed on a regular basis, employers can also look for trends and patterns that appear across the organization. That way, owners can make decisions on how to prioritize resources to make their company better.

Keys to a Successful Performance Review Program

To ensure that your Performance Review Program is a success, it is important to be mindful of your company culture and appetite to implement. If your team is not ready for a formal performance review, start small and gather feedback to find a method that works for your company. Without sufficient engagement levels, it will be hard to discern critical information that could change the course of your company’s future. Be aware of your workplace dynamics and be thoughtful in crafting an environment that promotes open honest communication.

Once implemented, it is also important to support each person that is involved. In particular, you should provide training to managers, so they make consistent assessments. It is also prudent to engage employees throughout the performance review process, so they understand the value that is gained if everyone participates in good faith.

Then once you have made your evaluations, take a look at the feedback that was received and take action. You don’t have to implement every suggestion, but at the very least acknowledge the ideas and thoughts that come from your team. They are there to build the company just as much as the leaders who manage them.

Here to Help

Want to implement or refine your performance review program, but don’t know where to start? Honiva Consulting Ltd. is here to help. We can be reached for a free confidential consultation at +1-403-470-5350 or [email protected]

For further details on additional HR service offerings, please visit our website at or follow along for more informative tips by joining us on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. We also run a complementary LinkedIn and Facebook group called “Insights by HonivaHR” where you can access free information on how to become an effective and legally compliant employer. Or you can sign-up for our quarterly newsletter to have help sent straight to your inbox from our company homepage.

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