Giving performance reviews that matter

  • December 28, 2015
  • /   Reggie Dogan
  • /   training-development

Source: Pixabay

You know the things most people dread: root canals, endoscopies and performance reviews are a fees of them that quickly come to mind.

General Electric made headlines this year with the announcement of abolishing a review system that assigned employees a performance score relative to their peers and resulted in the lowest percentile getting fired.

Other companies are rethinking their practices, too.

Accenture, a worldwide consulting firm that employs some 300,000 people said it is getting rid of annual performance reviews.

Critics of performance reviews say they waste time and money, alienate employees, and are unnecessary, since any good manager already is keeping close tabs on employee performance with a system in place.

Before performance reviews go the way of typewriters and carbon paper, Inc. magazine offered some of the most important universal building blocks for conducting effective reviews.

Detailing “6 Things Your Employees Want From Performance Reviews," Joel Trammell said, while “Old-school reviews are on their last gasp, I hope these guidelines will help you as we move forward--toward feedback that's regular, relevant, and useful.”

Tramell portends the looming dilemma that companies face in their increasing disenchantment with performance reviews while offering some important suggestions on making them work.

It's been a tough year for performance reviews. Headlines urge us to kill them, nix them, blow them up. Studies reveal alarming stats, like the fact that 95 percent of managers are dissatisfied with their performance-management systems. (Nearly as good a barometer: there are now over 300 Dilbert strips about performance reviews.)

So how can we build a feedback mechanism that works--for the business and for the employee? There is, of course, no one-size-fits-all solution, but there are some basic, universal building blocks of effective reviews.

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