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‘Tis the Season, But This One Doesn’t Offer Gifts

By Personal Branding Blog

‘Tis the Season, But This One Doesn't Offer Gifts image shutterstock 144400786 300x200

It’s here, again!

The season is back.

No, I’m not talking about the holiday season.

I’m talking about the Annual Performance Review Season, right?

Yes, ’tis the season everyone in the working world dreads, isn’t it?

More procrastination is engaged in during this time of the working year around the annual performance review than any other.

No one likes to get ‘em.

No one likes to give ‘em.

No one likes to even have to think about ‘em.

Yet, they are the #1 necessary evil in business.

My first client in 2006 had owned his company for about 12 years and until we started working together had never took his dozen or so employees through a performance review process.

My wife, who works in our county government and just stepped into an official management role about 12 months ago had not been involved in a performance review process in more than a decade.

Ten, twelve years, that’s serious procrastination, isn’t it?

It doesn’t have to be that way, and there is a very easy way to change this phenomenon.

We have to change what we believe about the purpose of the performance review/appraisal process.

When I ask my clients and workshop attendees, to tell me what they think the purpose of the performance review/appraisal process is, the answers I get are:

  • To let people know how they’re doing
  • To give people feedback
  • To determine their salary for the next year and their bonus for this year
  • To let them know if they’re meeting expectations

Those are just mini-purposes of a performance review/appraisal process.

The ultimate purpose, few business managers or leaders understand is that the performance review/appraisal process must be, “to improve individual and organizational (team) performance.”

That’s it!

It’s that simple.

Is your company’s performance review process “improving individual and organizational or team performance?”

And, is it doing it in a specific, measurable way?

Most are not.

Few people know how to do them right.

And, that’s not surprising.

Because if you don’t know the purpose for something, you will likely end up focusing on the wrong methodology and inputs measuring the wrong things, going down the wrong path.

Once you understand that the purpose of your performance review process is solely to “improve individual and organizational or team performance, how might that understanding change your focus and your approach?

And, that approach must start at the very beginning of the process, not the end.

The beginning is the ‘job description,’ which must be enhanced and adjusted for every employee if you want to do this process effectively.

Most job descriptions make it extremely difficult to effectively manage an employee’s performance so that it continually improves.

Few job descriptions describe measurable, quantifiable results employees are expected to achieve. They are just a list of tasks and “responsibilities” that are challenging at best to offer feedback on.

The standards for job performance are ambiguous and offer too much wiggle room for debate.

If you want better results from your company’s performance review/appraisal process it has to start with clear and measurable performance expectations on the front end of the relationship each year.

If you’re performance review/appraisal process is NOT improving individual and organizational performance each year and is just a futile, frustrating, resentment creating exercise for everyone involved, maybe it’s time to start anew.

In 2012 I created a free report you may want to download to help you get started titled, “The 5 Master Keys to Effective Performance Conversations” you can get it at .