So, what you may have thought was the hard part of a Performance Appraisal and Merit Increase process is behind you. You have written the appraisal for each of your employees and thoroughly thought about and distributed the merit increase amounts and any warranted market adjustments and promotions. As much as you may want to just ignore this next step or to send your subordinate an appraisal by e-mail, resist that urge. This is actually the MOST important part of the process. Below are some guidelines to help you deliver the most effective performance appraisals:
- DO include examples and specific information under each assessment category
- This will make it easier to stay on track and discuss all the pertinent points
- DON’T use the canned verbiage- even if it is easy
- It won’t effectively deliver your points and your subordinates will know that you did not take the time necessary to really think about them and their accomplishments
- DO take the time necessary to do a thoughtful job on each appraisal
- DO review each subordinates’ accomplishments
- not just those that have occurred in the last quarter, but throughout the year.
- Don’t rate everyone a 5 or even a 3 ( on a 1-5 rating scale).
- It’s always easier to deliver good news than bad, but take your responsibility as a manager seriously and rate your employees realistically.
- If you do need to rate someone a 1 or a 2- have specific examples ready to point to as the reason why you feel they are not performing adequately.
- DO provide a copy to your subordinate and let them review it prior to meeting to discuss
- This allows them time to digest and process your comments
- DO leave time for questions and open discussion.
- DO schedule uninterrupted time, usually an hour, for the discussion with your subordinate.
- DO provide a summary at the end of the review that pulls all of the components together
- Do talk about growth opportunities for next year and what you would like your subordinate to achieve, as well as goals they may have for themselves.
Done correctly, the performance appraisal discussion can open the door for better year round communication between you and your team!