Performance evaluations

  • Begin with a strong performance plan. Include clear performance measures and update plans throughout the year as things change. 
  • Provide ongoing feedback. Ongoing feedback eliminates surprises in the evaluation, helps supervisors focus on supporting employees, and gives employees time to improve performance.
  • Identify key issues/themes that need to be discussed. Give employees a draft evaluation with enough time to review and come prepared to the evaluation conference.
  • Avoid surprises. The evaluation conference shouldn’t be the first time an employee hears about a performance problem or receives recognition for an accomplishment.
  • Be specific. Clearly explain accomplishments and failures. Refer to the deliverables in the performance plan. Describe the impact of achievements or performance issues.
  • Document both good and bad performance. Capture specific awards and commendation as well as corrective or disciplinary action and performance improvement plans. Make sure to evaluate the entire year, and avoid the ‘halo/horn effect’ of evaluating only the most recent performance.
  • Focus on key deliverables and issues. Avoid details that don’t pertain to the employee’s performance.
  • Be constructive. Focus on what the employee needs to do next to either develop knowledge and skills or improve performance.

Coaching and feedback

  • Provide weekly feedback and coaching. Confront difficult subjects right away. Recognize accomplishments as they occur. 
  • Let employees know exactly how they are performing. Refer to the deliverables in the employee’s performance plan.
  • Focus on what the employee needs to do in order to be successful. Draw attention to behaviors and results. Involve the employee in defining issues and developing solutions.

Interim Reviews

  • Keep it simple. The purpose of interim reviews is to promote focused discussion between supervisors and employees during the year. 
  • Build a culture that values frequent feedback. Reinforce the expectation that employees deserve frequent feedback and that a primary function of supervisors is to help employees be successful.
  • Contractual restrictions. Some Collective Bargaining Agreements only allow one formal review per year. Consider other alternatives such as informal feedback that is recorded in a supervisory file.
Last updated
Tuesday, May 2, 2023
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