A critical aspect of any boss’s job is carrying out annual employee performance reviews. Bosses and employees alike seem to dread them, but your employees will work better when they know how you view their work quality and what is expected of them. Feedback in any area of life is valuable. Without it, how would we grow? Allstaff Services, Inc. is a staffing company serving the greater Phoenix and Tucson areas. Our passion is finding your business the optimal hire; your job is to retain them and help them succeed. The success of your employees means success for your business, and effective performance reviews are a key part of that equation.

What is An Effective Performance Review?

The image conjured up by the mere mention of performance reviews is that of employee after employee being ushered into a side conference room. They’re handed a piece of paper by their direct supervisor that lists their strengths and weaknesses and some pleasant, or not so pleasant, comments about those strengths and weaknesses. And the review ends with a confusing and awkward, “Thanks for coming.”

Delivering an effective performance review does not happen in one day. It takes an entire year of initiative. The kind of interaction mentioned above—the compliment, criticism, compliment sandwich—most often leads to confusion on the part of your solid employees, and it creates false confidence on the part of your weaker employees. As a top staffing company in Phoenix and Tucson, we’ve compiled a few tips to help you navigate your next annual performance appraisals with grace and confidence.

  • Set expectations and goals. Sit down with each of your direct reports and go over the company’s goals and expectations for your team, as well as their own performance goals for the year. Setting the tone at the beginning of each year will allow for a healthy amount of accountability between you and your team.
  • Touch base throughout the year. Your initial meeting to set goals and your year-end performance appraisals should not be the only time your employees hear from you about their work performance. Plan to sit down briefly with your employees on a quarterly basis, or even monthly, to ask their view on how things are going. This time also allows you an opportunity to praise them or steer them in the right direction.
  • Prep your employees in advance. According to Muse.com, a few weeks before the annual review, “start with any official forms your company wants you to use, or create your own, asking each employee to craft a summary of his or her key job responsibilities, current project work, and a recap of goals and achievements.” It can also be helpful to have your employees fill out a self-evaluation. The key is to prepare them for what to expect when they sit down with you. It’s stressful for everyone; eliminating any unnecessary ambiguity will be helpful.
  • The day of, put the onus on them. At the end of the day, you are their boss, and it behooves you to guide your employees directly. But first, try some coaching techniques to draw out their appraisal of themselves and where they think they can improve. You are working with mature adults who have the capacity to self-reflect and be honest; especially if you have prepared them in advance for the review. After you have discussed their strengths and achievements, allow them to own their areas of improvement before you add your considerations.

In order to do service to your employees and offer an effective performance appraisal, you will have to go above and beyond these four points, but they are a good starting place. If your brain tends to think more in the way of what not to do, read this advice from the American Management Association. And, when you have an employment opening that requires an immediate solution, count on Allstaff Services, Inc., a superior work agency and staffing company in Phoenix and Tucson. We provide your company with qualified, professional personnel for the present, with an eye toward your future success.