The success of your business relies on your employees; by getting the best from your team you get the best for your organisation. Employees need to feel appreciated, supported and that you are invested in helping them progress their careers. On the flip side, your business can suffer both commercial and reputational damage if issues of underperformance are not managed effectively.
Annual appraisals play a key role in helping to recognise and reward good employees, and identify and coach those whose performance or conduct is falling short of the mark. If done correctly appraisals will reap rewards – by improving performance you will in turn boost the bottom line of your business.
Preparation, preparation, preparation? This is without doubt the key to ensuring appraisals are constructive, meaningful and successful. It is vital to track performance throughout the year; keep a log of any memorable incidents or projects; look back at previous appraisal information/job descriptions to ensure objectives are being met; and gather views from line managers and peers.
A good appraisal is one in which the conversation is free flowing, with range of views expressed by both parties freely and without fear of repercussion. Evaluations should be based solely on performance, not personality, and the approach must be tailored to the individual. Feedback should positively reinforce the good or, in the case of underperformance, help the employee understand the impact of their actions/behaviour and what corrective action needs to be taken.
A good appraiser is someone who listens to what the employee is saying, does not interrupt or inhibit the flow of conversation, pays attention to non-verbal communication such as body language, and gives feedback based on fact not subjective opinion.
Well planned and executed appraisals will help you harness the talent and aspirations of every person within your organisation, solve problems and ultimately improve performance. Are you getting it right?