Don’t Skip Employee Performance Reviews: Here’s Why (Part 1)

Chances are performance reviews aren’t something you or your employees get stoked about. They can be awkward and ineffective, especially if it’s the only time of year you provide feedback. (This is a bad idea, but more on that later.)

The truth is, timely feedback is critical. And your employees likely want it, even if you’re pointing out areas where they are falling short.

In fact, when workers were surveyed about feedback, a majority (57%) preferred corrective feedback; only 43% preferred praise/recognition.

When asked what was most beneficial to their career, 72% of those surveyed believed their performance would improve if their managers would provide corrective feedback. Furthermore, millennials, who comprise the largest percentage of today’s workforce, want feedback 50% more than other employees and prefer it at least monthly.

We can’t promise you won’t have to have some tough conversations with your employees as a manager. But we can promise sweeping things under the rug is a far worse alternative.

Now that we’ve established that employees want feedback, let’s talk about why managers must schedule regular performance evaluations.

  1. They outline specific expectations of the employee and show how their work fits into the goals of your organization.  You can’t hit the target if you don’t know for what you’re aiming.
  2. They establish a measurable and consistent benchmark for bonuses and merit increases.
  3. They keep you accountable to coach your team, as well as invest in their professional development.
  4. They document conversations you and your employees have had about their performance, as well as any potential disciplinary issues that could result in termination.
  5. They can redirect your course. Can you imagine if a coach only talked to her players about their strategy and performance when the game was over? Performance evaluations allow you to identify areas that can be improved through training or tools. They also might signal when it’s time to give your all-star employee a promotion. (And in today’s job-seeker’s market, retaining your top talent and giving them opportunities to advance is more critical than ever.)

Why Regular Feedback is Key

Now there are multiple schools of thought on how to approach employee reviews, and we’ll get into all of that in our next post. However, we will say this, if you’re only providing feedback to your employees once a year, that’s a problem.

In today’s fast-paced work environment, real-time feedback should be the norm. Having regular conversations with your team members nurtures your relationship and builds trust. It allows you to celebrate your team’s successes and give them coaching to grow from their mistakes in the moment. (Not to mention, trying to provide the best possible feedback on a project completed nine months earlier isn’t realistic.) Even better, having feedback at more regular intervals tends to boost performance.

In Your Corner

Most managers have great intentions when it comes to coaching and staying on track with performance reviews. But when you’re knee-deep in payroll, open enrollment, benefits, and onboarding paperwork, performance reviews might get overlooked. Let us tackle your back-office tasks for you so you can develop your business’s most important resource. Schedule an appointment here.