They either send your team running for the hills or….Well, that's probably about it. Employees look forward to performance reviews just about as much as a triple root canal and managers tend to view them as yet another burdensome task HR has forced upon them.
While that has never been the intention of these sessions, it's what the reality has become for many. And considering even Jack Welch used the term "rank and yank" in reference to performance reviews, it's no wonder these can be negatively-viewed and anxiety-ridden events.
So maybe it's time to ditch the traditional performance review and implement a more modern take. Here's where they can fall short and what you can do to break away and move forward.
Perform an impromptu survey of employees and managers and you'll quickly have a handful of reasons why performance reviews are viewed in such a negative light. The issues can run deep, but here are just a few that barely scratch the surface:
They can spend too much time in the past. Many employers only conduct reviews annually. So in just a one-hour meeting (or less), the manager has to cover a year's worth of employee performance plus cite specific examples, provide short- and long-term goals, offer resources, etc. It's a lot of ground to cover in a short time.
And the real clincher here is that managers can fall into the trap of looking too heavily at past behavior — and often honing in unnecessarily on negative behavior to boot. If a manager is on top of things though, the reality is that both negative and positive behaviors should have already been dealt with or acknowledged in the moment they occurred so a deep rehashing during the review can be superfluous.