Taking the Dread Out of Performance Reviews

The Hot Toddy: On Living Fully & Leading Well

When it comes to performance reviews, there are two absolute truths for every organization:

1. No manager wants to write it or give it.

2. Every employee wants feedback.

It it the balancing of these two truths that I find plagues most organizations that I serve. Managers dread performance reviews because they take up an inordinate amount of time to write and give thoroughly, and the potential legal liabilities surrounding the written review can make the task all the more taxing because of the need to cross every “t” and dot every “i” in the review. Managers also tell me that they dread reviews because employees will ask for a salary increase if the evaluation indicates that the employee has achieved or improved since the last evaluation. Due to this fear, along with the aforementioned time and potential liabilities, many managers have chucked the performance review altogether so that one…

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