Many people do – both managers and employees alike. Employees dread them because they often have no idea what the manager is going to say about their performance. Managers dread them because they don’t know how to deliver the difficult news when an employee is not performing well. This stems from fear of conflict and not knowing how to manage it.
There is an easy resolution to ensure employees don’t dread the review meeting. Talk more often than once a year! Don’t wait for the other individual to initiate a discussion. If you’re the manager, talk with your employee about their performance. If you’re the employee and you’re not getting any feedback from your manager, ask them! You are both responsible to take initiative with one another. Best practice: have a bi-weekly one on one meeting. There should NEVER be any surprised when the formal review is held.
Employee – don’t be afraid to hear about areas where you need to develop in. It’s the manager’s job to point these out to you. None of us are perfect – all of us can develop in at least one area, most of us in many areas. You’ll become a better employee. Good managers will ask for feedback from you about their performance as a manager. If this happens, provide one or two examples (the most important) of how they could be a better manager to you.
Managers – be kind in your delivery of areas where employees need to improve. If you can, provide more positive feedback than you do negative. If all you do is provide feedback where a person needs to improve, you are demotivating that employee and they will not want to stick around. Assure them that you will do all you can to help them to improve by providing tools, training, whatever.
Managers – employees usually do want to hear how they can improve. So get over thinking about delivering this type of news as conflict. Just make it a conversation and keep emotion out of it. You want your employees to be successful because that makes you and the Company look good. Some employees will respond more emotionally than others. Some may even disagree with you either silently or not so silently. Some may give you examples of things they’ve accomplished that you’re not aware of. Take these into consideration after you’ve verified them – it could change the rating you gave them.
Most companies conduct performance reviews because most companies understand the benefits both to the employee, in terms of motivation and understanding expectations, and to the Company in terms of improved productivity. Take a look at this infographic from BLR:
<img src="http://hr.blr.com/images/infographics/2014-Performance-Management-Survey.png" alt="BLR's Performance Management Survey" width="600" height="1730"/>
<p>BLR's Performance Management Survey: By <a href="http://hr.blr.com/">HR.BLR.com</a></p>