The days of yearly review are gone. Now leverage continuous performance management to drive engagement, retention, and culture, on a regular basis.
Wouldn’t you agree that the unleashing of the pandemic coupled with the dynamism and uncertainty is pushing businesses to rethink all aspects of their scalability, including performance management?
Invariably, there is a sentiment to move away from the traditional methods focused on annual interventions to invest into something more continuous and regular.
In this article, we will explore the rise of continuous performance management, what it means, its merits, and how you can leverage its unique capabilities.
Continuous performance management entails focusing on different performance management processes at regular intervals throughout the year, on an ongoing basis. The central focus here is to highlight the importance of a holistic performance management approach, marked by regular check-ins and frequent feedback to facilitate better business results.
Contrary to the traditional performance management approach, which solely focuses on annual interventions and check-ins, continuous performance management advocates the need to connect more frequently to foster a sense of belongingness, engagement, and an enriching experience.
You need to adopt continuous performance management to keep pace with the new employee expectations, changing nature of the businesses, and customer experiences to enable organizations to not only survive but thrive. Organizations today no longer operate in a stable environment. Invariably, goals, timelines, expectations, cannot be set a year in advance and be left to annual interventions as advocated by traditional performance management systems.
The market dynamics, cut-throat competition, and agile business conditions are pushing organizations to constantly reinvent and innovate to ensure business continuity. Therefore, performance management, monitoring, evaluation and realignment, once a year can no longer suffice the changing requirements.
Moreover, continuous performance management, by the virtue of facilitating regular connections, has the potential to foster greater communication and collaboration, which can enable businesses to thrive in a connected world. On the other hand, the traditional annual appraisal approach promotes silos in working, preventing engagement and creation of shared value.
With a firm understanding of the what and the why, let’s understand the key elements that make continuous performance management stand apart. The following four elements ensure that businesses are not stuck with rigid goals and metrics and give them the room to innovate and create value:
In a continuous performance management system, focus on dynamic goal setting with more importance towards near and short term goals. The objective here is to ensure flexibility and continuously reinvent the goals based on business needs and market circumstances. Dynamic goal setting ensures that the goals are regularly validated and updated to create maximum organizational impact.
The next element for continuous performance management is frequent and two-way feedback. There are two facets at play here.
While the traditional approach focuses on a top to bottom feedback, the continuous performance management advocates a bottom up feedback mechanism as well. Thus, the objective is to have a holistic and regular approach to feedback.
While frequent feedback is a more formal intervention, regular check-ins are an integral part of continuous performance management. Regular check-ins seek to address challenges and realign expectations during the course of a task or a project.
Instead of waiting till the end, as advocated by annual performance management, the continuous approach believes that regular check-ins between employees and their managers, amongst co-workers and across the organization lead to better collaboration, greater alignment and collective responsibility.
Continuous performance management requires organizations to introduce the element of self evaluation. Under the traditional approach, the leadership and managers are solely responsible for evaluating the performance of employees.
However, the continuous performance management approach encourages employees to evaluate their performance on a regular basis. The objective is to identify for oneself the challenges as well as the opportunities to contribute to one’s own professional development, and, thereby, further organizational growth.
The final element of the continuous performance approach for our discussion today is constant recognition and appreciation. Continuous performance management provides the opportunity to regularly monitor employee productivity and value creation, and, consequently, reward the top performers.
The idea is to appreciate efforts and good performance in real time — even for smaller wins — rather than wait till the end of the year. This has the potential to act as an incentive for the recipients to feel acknowledged and valued for their contribution as well as for others to improve and get rewarded the next time.
There are several benefits that organizations that have adopted continuous performance management claim to have reaped. Here are the top seven which make the most sense for organizations as well as individuals:
Regular check-ins, frequent feedback, and interventions lead to greater avenues for employees and managers to connect and collaborate. Employees are often more happy and satisfied as opposed to traditional performance management.
According to research, 95% of managers report they are “unhappy” with traditional performance reviews. Therefore, a continuous approach leads to a greater sense of engagement and belongingness. Employees feel a part of a larger vision when they are frequently reminded of the big picture and their contribution to the same.
Continuous performance management seeks to ensure that performance challenges are addressed in real time to augment productivity and impact the bottom line. Statistically speaking, companies adopting continuous performance feedback significantly outperformed competition at a 24% higher rate.
Therefore, continuously evaluating performance and focusing on development can lead to better financial results for the organization.
When they are constantly engaged, appreciated and included, employees’ commitment and dedication towards the organization increases. Invariably, this reduces the voluntary turnover rate and promotes greater retention.
Furthermore, when employees stay longer it creates a positive employer branding facilitating attraction of top talent, as well as building a strong succession pipeline.
Frequent check-ins and interventions not only augment engagement but also facilitate greater connectedness. Connecting and collaborating to review performance and improve it ensures that employees know more about one another, are able to build authentic relationships, and the workplace dons a more human and impactful cultural fabric.
Under the traditional performance management system, employees and managers wait till the end of the year to voice their concerns about what’s not working well, which invariably is quite late, especially in the fast paced world today. The team members of managers who provide weekly feedback instead of annual are 5.2 times more likely to strongly agree that they receive meaningful feedback. Continuous performance management enables real time feedback and improvement to ensure that only the most effective and efficient practices and processes are followed.
Continuous performance management pushes employees to work hard and give in their best all year long and not just on the days closer to the annual review. Globoforce research shows that 51% of employees believe that annual reviews are inaccurate, and 53% say it does not motivate them. Whereas, a continuous approach promotes a sense of responsibility to perform well everyday and each day counts. Invariably, this leads to a culture where high levels of performance becomes a norm.
Finally, organizations which adopt continuous performance management are agile and resilient. They are capable of reinventing their goals, processes and practices, and adapt to any changing circumstances. This agility and resilience is critical for business continuity and maintaining a competitive edge.
Despite the remarkable benefits and advantages, organizations are apprehensive and reluctant about adopting a continuous performance management approach. There are three major reasons behind such reluctance, including:
Continuous performance management requires greater efforts and interventions on the part of the managers and leaders. They often see it as an additional burden and shirk away from this responsibility as they are unable to see the immediate merits for themselves as well as for the organization.
It is important to create the right case and explain to them how in the long run, continuous performance management can create a seamless high performance journey.
It is true that frequent interventions and continuous management requires a greater time commitment than annual reviews. This is, thus, seen as a roadblock where organizations feel it is a waste of time.
However, it is important to undertake a cost benefit analysis to understand how continuous performance management holds the key to various tangible and intangible benefits mentioned above, which would require additional resources and commitment if a continuous approach is not adopted. Using a continuous performance management tool saves 100+ manager hours by automating the entire process.
Finally, many organizations do not have the right tools or are unaware about the right metrics to make sense of the value created by continuous performance. In such a situation, this transformational approach is dismissed as ineffective and not an organizational priority. Here, organizations must partner with the right platforms that can help gauge the results of continuous performance management and translate it into organizational impact.
An understanding of the key elements, benefits and apprehensions of a continuous performance management system leads us straight to comprehending how to facilitate organization-wide implementation for the same. These following six steps can enable organizations to start implementing and reaping benefits of the continuous performance management system:
It is important to start with seeking a buy-in from the leadership as well as the employees. Continuous performance management requires some investment in tools and resources to facilitate regular check-ins and frequent interactions. It also requires a mindset shift and greater effort on the part of managers and employees to connect more frequently and align performance and goals often.
Therefore, the first focus must be on getting everybody in the organization onboard with the idea by illustrating the top benefits both for the organizations (like greater productivity and business continuity) and for the employees and managers (like greater growth and development).
Manager and executive buy-in must be followed by considerable investment and focus on manager training. This involves investing in training to facilitate behavioural change amongst managers to facilitate competencies for coaching and transforming the way they communicate.
Continuous performance management requires a greater degree of communication and collaboration between managers and employees, and, therefore, investment in building leadership, mentorship and coaching skills is instrumental.
Once everyone is onboard with the right skills and competencies, the natural next step is to set goals and OKRs which are dynamic, agile and flexible. A focus on SMART goals can facilitate continuous performance management. Second, the goals must be agile and flexible. This suggests a move away from the traditional rigid goals which leave no room for transformation.
The goals should be aspirational, but at the same time must be dynamic enough to change to keep pace with the changing business conditions. Conditions like the pandemic of 2020 cannot be anticipated a year in advance, and business goals must be flexible enough to be reinvented based on the circumstances in hand.
Based on the goals and OKRs, the next step for effective implementation of a continuous performance management system is to foster a culture of 1:1 conversations between employees and their managers. These regular conversations must have a structure and cadence to ensure they are not missed out.
Such conversations can help eliminate roadblocks by discussing challenges and potential solutions. Connecting regularly also helps to build authentic relationships and breed trust. Finally, this can lead to a greater sense of belongingness, improve engagement, and ultimately boost performance.
Next, organizations must leverage different platforms that help facilitate effective continuous performance management. For instance, SuperBeings enables organizations to measure employee pulse as well as capture the level of performance with daily pulse surveys. Based on the responses, managers can align their outlook and benefit from industry best practices to create a high performance culture.
The objective is to collaborate with tools which can facilitate the process of capturing and analyzing employee data on a regular basis and translate into meaningful insights to manage and improve performance.
Finally, it is important to measure the effectiveness of the continuous performance management system and understand its impact on organizational productivity and bottom line. While some aspects of the process will work well, others will require some work and optimization to achieve the desired goals.
It is also important to gauge the level of adoption and reasons behind low adoption to address the same. Choosing a platform that integrates in the flow of work requiring zero context switching for employees and managers, thus increasing adoption.
Most fast growing organizations agree that steps for implementation coupled with a few best practices form the secret recipe for successful continuous performance management. Let’s look at the top five practices to ensure maximum impact.
The goals must be created collectively. This entails involving employees in the goal and OKR setting process to ensure a sense of commitment and ownership. When employees take part in setting the goals they tend to be more accountable. Furthermore, they have a better understanding of their role in achieving them and what is expected out of them.
Continuous performance management requires a focus on feedback from different stakeholders. This involves managers, subordinates, co-workers, professionals from other departments as well as self evaluation. The idea is to get a holistic picture of the employee’s performance, not just on technical skills and productivity, but on different ways they are able to create value for the organization.
The transition from the traditional annual performance management must be gradual and incremental. Transforming annual reviews to daily reviews in one day will topple the status quo and lead to an overwhelming situation across the organization. Therefore, annual management should be transitioned to quarterly review and interventions and with time, frequency should be increased to make it a continuous effort.
A focus should be on integrating the available technology tools with existing processes to facilitate greater effectiveness and reduce the cost and time to start from scratch. For instance, leveraging platforms like SuperBeings that integrate with Slack or MS Teams can be instrumental in promoting better and regular communication and collaboration between teams. It also helps gauging team pulse and capturing the level of performance regularly to identify areas and ways to improve.
Finally, continuous performance management requires organizations to shift away from the traditional notion of evaluation, which focuses on measuring productivity and organizational impact. Rather, the focus should be on employee development to facilitate the growth and development of the most important organizational asset and resource, the employees. The idea is to align organizational and employee goals and promote a more collaborative approach which entails impact for businesses as well as those who participate to foster its success.
As we draw this discussion to a close, it is evident that continuous performance management is integral for organizations to thrive in the new normal. On one hand, it helps meet the need of the new millennial workforce for most fast growing organizations which expect and demand frequent feedback. On the other hand, it enables businesses to stay agile and resilient to reinvent and innovate and stay relevant with the changing market dynamics.
If you are starting your journey towards continuous performance management platforms like SuperBeings can facilitate a smooth ride. With capabilities to continuously gauge employee pulse and translate it into meaningful insights for better performance and manager development, To build a high performance culture book a demo below.
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It is no longer an assumption that the traditional approach to annual goal setting and review has run its course. The VUCA world demands more quick and adaptable business models.
While the agile values and methodology was initially created for software delivery, you can apply the same to transform how you set and achieve your business goals.
In this article, we will focus on:
Traditionally, goal setting has been a very static and long-term process for organizations. Here are a few key components of traditional goal setting and performance management:
This form of goal setting and performance management had relevance for organizations operating in steady and stable market conditions.
However, in today’s VUCA world, the pace of change is skyrocketing and organizations unable to tide with the same are finding it extremely difficult to survive, let alone thrive.
Some of the reasons to reimagine goal setting for VUCA world include:
While it may not be apparent in the first look, agile and OKRs are quite complementary and combining the two can be a great step for growing organizations. Here’s why —
Here are a few reasons why you should combine agile and OKRs for your organization:
Now that it is clear why working agile and OKRs together makes sense for growing organizations, let’s quickly explore the top ways in which you can apply agile techniques to your OKR framework to make goal setting and performance management suitable for the VUCA world.
In this last section of agile and OKR for better goal setting and performance management, we will uncover the top framework.
We have combined the best components of different frameworks like waterfall goals, delivery agile, scaling, full stack agile, into a single framework with 5 major components that can help you enhance the complementary potential of agile and OKR
This approach can help you leverage the benefits of agile methodologies and OKR framework to impact all aspects of organizational structure for achievement of goals, including the culture, strategy, initiatives, tactics, etc. The framework is premised on:
If you are struggling with combining agile and OKRs for your organizations, chances are you are focusing on activity based key results which often resemble agile steps, leading to confusion and inability to meet goals.
For instance, if you have an event coming up and wish to successfully execute the same, the objective will be common, with specific value based key results for each team.
If you look closely, while the objective is shared, key results are spread across sales, marketing, and even product/ services teams
Your agile and OKR framework should enable you to get the best of both worlds when it comes to results. Agile results by nature are qualitative in nature and focus on the features that you wish to ascertain in a specific period of time. On the other hand, OKRs are driven by metrics. Thus, you can use a combination of the two for effective results:
The combination can help you create an ideal balance between outputs and outcomes which are both critical when it comes to goal achievement and performance management.
Using data and not relying solely on opinions will help you set agile OKRs which don’t under or over estimate the goals. For instance, if the market data on traffic to a new website in your industry is 20,000 clicks in one week, your OKR can focus on reaching 25,000 to make it aspirational but achievable up to 80%.
However, if you set the target at 50,000 or above, it will become too far fetched and the team might not even strive for it. On the flip side, if the target is only at 10,000, it will not encourage your employees to push the boundaries. Thus, you need to replace opinions and command OKRs with data backed experimentation.
Self organizing teams are important for growing organizations as they proactively take onus and ownership of achieving OKRs and lead to a greater degree of success. Step away from controlling detailed plans for each OKR and encourage the leadership to provide direction.
To conclude, if you combine agile and OKR, you have for yourself a clear model for success which you can easily apply to goal setting and performance management. Furthermore, leveraging the right technology resources can help you stay on track and enable you to thrive in the VUCA world.
Like most fast growing organizations, you might also be leveraging the OKR methodology to set, implement and facilitate effective goal setting to maximize growth. If not, you should start using OKRs ASAP.
OKRs not only provide an excellent goal setting framework but also drive high performance when implemented strategically. Most importantly, with enhanced goal visibility and transparency, OKRs ensure that everyone is on the same page which is the foundation of a cohesive and high performing culture.
In this article, we will discuss 8 ways in which you can adopt the OKR methodology to build a thriving company culture.
A high performance and thriving company culture is based on the foundation of clarity and focus. When there are 100 things to focus on, your employees will eventually lose sight of what’s actually important and might feel burdened with non-priority tasks. This will lead to a poor employee experience and limited productivity, both situations that prevent an impactful culture.
However, when you apply the OKR methodology, you will be able to limit your focus on 3-5 top priorities which will attract attention, energy and efforts across the organization. You will then be able to create a high performance culture by dedicating all your resources to the key priorities to realize impact.
A culture that thrives on collaboration, teamwork and alignment is one which creates maximum impact. The OKR methodology can help achieve this in an effective manner. On one hand, everyone is clear about their role in the OKR achievement, which makes collaboration seamless because everyone is on the same page and no one steps on the shoes of others.
On the other hand, OKRs can help your employees align their responsibilities and tasks with the overall vision of the organization, motivating them to contribute to the big picture.
To learn more about how to align teams using OKRs, read this
Recent times have shown that uncertainty and ambiguity will continue to mark the new normal. Thus, a culture of agility, resilience and responsiveness is critical for fast growing organizations. The OKR methodology can help achieve the same.
OKRs are cognizant of the changing environment and have the flexibility to be adapted to the same.
More importantly, you can leverage the OKR methodology to foster a culture that focuses on outcomes and is not fixated on the tasks to achieve the outcome at hand.
One of the top challenges of building a great company culture is a siloed approach and annual reflection. This leads to surfacing of major risks and problems which result in high rates of attrition, absenteeism and lower levels of motivation, productivity, etc.
However, the OKR methodology adopts an approach of continuous engagement and reflection. You can create a regular cadence to check OKR progress for each of your team members, even daily is effective.
This continuous engagement and reflection can enable you to preempt risks before they surface and leverage the power of communication to address them in real-time. Invariably, a culture built on continuous engagement leads to greater impact and high levels of performance as well as employee satisfaction.
The lack of transparency is one of the key obstacles for many fast growing organizations that seek to create a thriving company culture. A way out often seems difficult to navigate. Fortunately, the OKR methodology can help address this challenge as well. When you use OKR, especially with the support of an effective OKR tool, you can facilitate high levels of transparency.
Everyone in the organization will not only know their role, but also will have a complete view of the level of performance for others. Such transparency can help you increase coordination of efforts and give everyone the visibility of what’s happening across the company.
You may agree that most fast growing organizations these days seek to replace a strict hierarchy with a more flat organizational structure that facilitates inclusion of diverse ideas, thoughts and opinions. However, many struggle when it comes to actually implementing this thought.
Adopting OKRs can solve this problem.
By nature, the OKR methodology is based on a collaborative foundation where a top-down approach compliments a bottom-down approach for goal setting.
This suggests that while the skeletal structure of the goals might be laid down by those in the top leadership, you can give all employees the freedom and autonomy to create OKRs for their teams and verticals.
When your employees participate in setting the OKRs they have to execute, the level of ownership is much higher. Thus, you can leverage the OKR methodology to create a thriving culture built on greater ownership and a flat organizational structure.
With a focus on continuous engagement and reflection, the OKR methodology can help you facilitate open communication and feedback. Many studies have shown that a culture that facilitates regular feedback along with open channels of communication is more likely to thrive than one which does not.
In the OKR methodology, when you constantly track your OKR progress (download our free template for tracking OKRs), you will be armed with data backed insights to offer regular feedback for your employees. Furthermore, you can also leverage the same to start meaningful conversations with your team members in case you feel that there is any kind of disconnect. Such open communication can help you create a truly inclusive culture when employees feel their voice is heard.
Finally, a company culture that thrives has two major components supporting it, accountability and recognition.
The OKR methodology is an answer to both these challenges.
Now that you know how the OKR methodology can help you in many ways to create a thriving culture, it is also true that as a fast growing organization with multi-pronged focus, leveraging OKRs is a challenging task. To address the same, you can collaborate with an integrated OKR tool like SuperBeings to automate the OKR adoption and maintenance.
With SuperBeings, you get to —
With performance management becoming a critical part of organizational success, giving effective employee reviews is becoming a crucial part of a manager’s responsibilities. While regular employee performance reviews focus on illustrating the strengths and what worked for employees and the organization at large, there needs to be an equal focus on areas of development in case of poor work performance.
If you look closely, writing negative employee reviews is often considered to be more difficult because the words need to be chosen very carefully. It needs to have a developmental tone rather than a critical one.
As the term suggests, negative employee reviews are reviews delivered to employees who have underperformed and need to be pulled up to the expected levels. It involves a variety of components which include:
To get actionable ideas of how to deal with poor performance issues at work, read this
Writing and delivering negative employee reviews is very important for any organization that seeks to maintain a high level of employee performance. It is critical to ensure that:
When you are writing negative employee performance reviews, you need to be extremely cautious of the words you choose. Using the right words will help the receiver acknowledge and work on the suggested points, while using words that are too harsh or critical can lead to adverse consequences. There are a few reasons which make the choice of words extremely important.
The same review when offered with the right words can be more powerful and have a larger influence.
For instance a statement like ‘you interfere too much in the work of others’ can be seen as a personal attack and may yield a defensive response from the receiver.
However if you frame it in a different manner like ‘if you give others greater autonomy and freedom to work in their own way, you will be able to inspire greater creativity and innovation’, you will be able to put your message across and also help your employees understand how it will make a difference.
Download: Free guided 1:1 meetings template to get personalized meeting recommendations
In addition to being cautious of the words you use, there are a few other tips which you must keep in mind while writing negative performance reviews, including:
While giving negative reviews is difficult, don’t beat around the bush and get straight to the point. However, instead of directly saying what isn’t going well, try adopting the sandwich approach. Start with a positive comment, add areas of improvement and end it with some suggestions and action items.
Example: Tina has an excellent eye for detail and is very dedicated to her work. However, she often misses the deadlines which has led to a delay in 30% of her projects resulting in poor client experience. It would help her performance greatly, if she is able to prioritize her work better and keep an organized calendar for timely delivery. She can consider using the latest project management tools to facilitate better prioritization.
Second, negative employee reviews should focus on the job or the role and not the person specifically. Steer away from using words or phrases which may end up combining performance and personality of the person. Your review should be specific towards performance challenges and not generalize that performance challenge is a personality trait.
Example: Instead of saying, “you are not punctual”, you can say that “I have seen you arrive late for meetings frequently, leaving shorter time for discussions. It would be best if you could be more punctual to respect others' time and make the most effective use of the same.”
When you are writing negative performance reviews, you must focus on the progress and how a change in behavior and attitude can help them in the long run. Simply mentioning what went wrong and the associated process might lead to demotivation.
Example: Some of your work has had grammatical errors in the past, maybe because you were trying to complete a lot at once. I am sure if you prioritize some tasks and create an action plan, your work quality will be better.
Don’t simply give negative employee reviews about the problem area, but back it up with facts and data points. This will help you illustrate a pattern and establish that your review is not based on a single incident. Also, it will make your review more credible and authentic and not just a few words strung together. This will also help you in being very specific.
Example: It has been observed that 40% of your customers claim that you don’t have adequate knowledge of your product, leading to a poor experience.
There might be some performance parameters which are difficult to add quantitative data points to. In such cases, you can offer specific examples of underperformance, especially if it has been repetitive. It is ideal to have at least 2-3 instances of poor performance to make your point stronger.
Example: It has been noticed that in the aspiration to get your work perfect, you end up delaying projects. It was observed in project X with client A, project Y with client B as well as when the internal submission for Z was due.
Pro-tip: Use our free Performance Review Phrases template to get 50+ examples of writing a negative review positively
Once you write the negative employee reviews, you exactly know what you want to say to your employees. However, the way you deliver it also has a big impact on how it is received. To make the process simple, we have compiled a list of some of the best practices to help you deliver a poor performance review in the best way possible:
If you are delivering a negative performance review, it is best to do it in person, or if your team is remote, over a video call. If you deliver it over an email, you cannot be sure of the tone and context in which your words will be read.
It might backfire by being read as more critical than developmental as per the intent. Furthermore, when you are delivering the negative reviews face to face, you can also use your gestures and body language to facilitate authenticity and empathy.
No matter how poor the performance has been, when you are delivering negative employee reviews, you should stay away from yelling or using foul language. Since the focus is on facilitating development for your employee, yelling will only defeat the purpose, making the employee demotivated and pushing them towards even lower levels of confidence and motivation. Furthermore, it will negatively impact your organization from an employer brand perspective. It can also create a negative impact on the wellbeing of your employees.
While delivering the review, you may want to add some personal stories or anecdotes if you have yourself been through something on those lines. This will help you connect better with your employees and make them trust you more. Furthermore, it can enable you to illustrate how they can turn poor performance into something better with a live example in front of them.
Your negative review shouldn’t be a monologue where you deliver what you have written with the employee absorbing it as a passive recipient. Instead, make it a dialogue by putting forward questions to understand the reasons behind poor performance and how you and the organization as a whole can help turn the table. Hearing their side of the story is extremely important before deciding on the next steps.
When you are delivering negative employee reviews, you need to create a safe environment. It should not be harsh and the employee should feel comfortable in receiving what you have to offer. Also, make sure you deliver the review privately and not publicly shame your employee. They should see it as a developmental conversation in a safe environment, where they can also voice their opinions.
Finally, negative employee reviews need to be regular and not come as a surprise to your employees at the end of the year. Regular reviews will give your employees enough room to improve their performance. Furthermore, it will give them a clear picture of what to expect when the year closes.
To learn how SuperBeings can help you have guided conversations around negative performance review with AI recommendations based on performance and goals history as well as maintain a steady cadence to maximize the impact of such conversations, see this
After you have delivered the negative reviews to employees, the natural next step is to create a plan for improvement to help your employees reach the level of performance you expect out of them. This is a critical part of the performance management and talent development process for employees who have been consistently underperforming. Here are a few ways you can help your employees improve their performance.
If you have reached this level of negative employee reviews, you and your employee would be on the same page about their level of performance. Thus, it is best to create a list of action items that can help them improve their performance. To create the next steps, you must:
Next, your focus should not only be on planning the action items, but documenting them as well, because once they are out of sight, they’ll be out of mind. Furthermore, documenting them will help you remember the agreed steps and track progress every now and then.
Clearly document what needs to be achieved, by when and how. It can be a good idea to encourage your team members to constantly document their experience as well to help discuss what has been working well and what needs to improve.
Depending on the performance issue, you may want to introduce a performance improvement plan for your employee. It is a formal tool to address performance challenges which outlines specific goals and expectations along with clear actions that need to be undertaken over a duration of 30-90 days.
For more details on PIP, check out A guide to implementing a performance improvement plan (PIP)
You also must set up a cadence to discuss performance improvements or challenges once the next steps are agreed upon. Unless you connect regularly to discuss the status, you might find yourself at square one at the end of the next performance review period as well.
Depending on what needs to be achieved, you can set a weekly, fortnightly or monthly cadence to connect with your poor performers. While it may be seen as a regular review, it will also act as a reinforcer for them to ensure there is some improvement everytime the cadence to meet comes up.
When you are determining the next steps, it is important to identify the associated metrics as well. For instance, if you want your employee to become more detail oriented, your metric can focus on reduction in errors by a specific percentage over a specific duration of time.
The metrics will help you measure whether or not there has been an improvement in the performance as desired or not. At the same time, the metrics will help your employee move towards a specific goal.
While you have a set cadence, you may also want to check-in or follow up from time to time to make your employee comfortable enough to reach out to you in between your cadence for connecting. The follow ups can be over emails or calls or simple messages to check if everything is on track and to offer them any support whichever is needed. Especially in the beginning, you may need to check from time to time in case there’s any additional support that the employee needs to work on the action items.
Finally, to ensure that your negative employee reviews translate to impact, you must focus on evaluating progress. Use the metrics you defined to gauge the level of progress and document it whenever you evaluate the same. This will help you establish a trend over time.
Furthermore, if you feel the progress is below expectations, try to understand the rationale behind the same to check if putting the employee on a performance improvement plan will make more sense.
By now, you must have gained a clear understanding of how to write, deliver and follow up on negative employee performance reviews constructively. If you are keen to learn how best to connect negative performance issues with regular 1:1 meetings with your team members with technology, book a quick demo with one of our executives. We would love to show you around :)