Performance Reviews are meant for a good purpose, but done the wrong way, they estrange employees from their management
By far the most sensitive time for an employee that quite literally sends shivers down their spine when they think of it, the days of terror that keeps them awake, the horrifying prospect of something having gone wrong along the line, the very redemption of serving an organization – the performance review.
Employees quite literally spend weeks in anticipation for an HR activity that doesn’t really add up to much outside of the monetary incremental gain. And of late, the performance review exercise has been stained with frequent and high pitched criticism from the part of the employees being evaluated.
What exactly is going wrong here?
The answer lies in the approach to the entire process. To sum up, a few factors play a crucial role, and nothing hits back at management harder than an aggravated employee who’s about to quit and is spreading the word among the rest of the workforce. Here’s what the CHRO can do about it:
Be Transparent – Being vague about feedback about an employee’s performance may be the most politically correct thing to do at the outset, but it generally nosedives as far as employee satisfaction is concerned. Being precise with criticism and praise and exactly identifying performance parameters and metrics is a positive alternative. When coupled with a transparent scoring system, it holds the potential to work miracles.
The Proverbial Last Moment – Most performance reviews serve the very opposite of their intended function. When a sincere employee is informed of his/her inadequacies at the last moment just before an expected promotion or increment, it shatters the roof. Maintaining regular feedback is important and a periodic grading of the KRAs make the entire process much simpler, really.
Career Path – A Performance review is supposed to serve many functions, among them, encouragement for the employee to develop their skills or to acquire new ones, adding value to the organization. This is easier said than done, however, with the vast majority of performance review forms not even having a ‘further career development program’ section. Says a lot, doesn’t it?
Yet again, the CHRO is the hero. S/He has the capabilities AND the authority to turn this mysterious and often apprehension filled exercise into something meaningful that helps employees, and in turn, the organization’s productivity.