A STEP BY STEP GUIDE to Conduct an Employee Appraisal Meeting

Performance is a major ingredient of productivity. And providing feedbacks or evaluation on employee job performance as a manager or employer is very crucial. This may be an approach to redirect activities, ascertain competency for promotion or as a step to improve corporate standards. Most companies devote an hour or more annually to conduct an employee appraisal meeting. To mention a few of the benefits, workers are able to clearly understand their roles, personal strengths, the areas they need to develop and the level of professionalism required in office relationships through employee performance reviews.

Failing to conduct performance appraisals makes the work uneasy. It decreases management credibility, work morale, and organizational effectiveness in general while also forcing the management to waste time doing what employees have failed to do properly. Managers that fail to appraise an employee’s performance, creates a gap between the needs of the organization and that of the employee.

While considering employee performance reviews as a major course of driving productivity, it’s also important to note that some are not as effective as they ought to be. There are major standards on how to conduct performance appraisals. This includes performance standard and the performance appraisal structure. To create and maintain a viable performance review framework, managers must inform the employees of their value, recognize their accomplishments, develop an honest and a fair feedback track record, and show consistent treatment for all employees.

Employees are supposed to know how they have performed already before the organization could conduct performance appraisals. There should be existing performance standard already which managers must use to continually coach and provide feedback to employees prior to the appraisal meeting; it shouldn’t be a surprise at all. Then, on the performance appraisal structure, there must be established goals for every appraisal system. These goals will be disclosed below in one of the steps on how to conduct an employee appraisal meeting.

Create a goal

Above discussing performance, what do you stand to achieve after appraising an employee’s performance? Consider yourself unready to conduct an employee appraisal meeting if you have not established the appraisal purpose or resolved a way forward for the employees with some challenges. You need to have a close review of past appraisals for employees that are having one or two performance challenges. If they have failed to develop in an area where you have previously advised, consider figuring out the new models on how you can help them. If possible, discuss with the employees to come up with a resolution before conducting the meeting. To guide you in creating goals for the employee performance reviews, the following are important in setting up goals for an appraisal system.

  • Improving the organization’s productivity
  • Identifying requirements for performing a job
  • Notifying employees of promotion decisions, job termination, and job changes
  • Assessing employees’ performance against these goals

Create a collective agenda

Having established a goal for the appraisal, the next step is to create an agenda for the meeting. You can imagine how meetings would run if there is no agenda. This is also a meeting. Your agenda should be designed to guide you in the flow of your discussion and activities in the meeting. It should help you to effectively cover every topic you have planned to address.

Because your employee performance review will be designed as a two-way conversation, you should involve the employees. Send a copy of your agenda to the employees and invite them to provide their own points for discussion. Not considering the employees’ points would disrupt your time management or the entire appraisal meeting when they introduce many points not on the agenda during the meeting.

Sharing agendas will allow you and the employees to prepare better for discussion on the points. For instance, if your employee brings a pay rise for discussion, you will be able to prepare and check records on when last the employee’s pay was reviewed and if there are merits that should qualify the employee for a pay review instead of being totally unprepared at the meeting.

Discuss successes and challenges

Before this discussion, you must have on your own outlined the areas that require improvement by the employees and the measures that would be necessary to take in meetings their objectives. Before providing your suggestions, you are advised to ask for the employees’ opinion first. It is possible that they have already made conclusions similar to your idea on how to improve. Perhaps, they require a permission from you or something else to start on the development.

Remember that your discussion should always be referred to the existing performance standard. Most importantly, how you bring in the challenges matters a lot. Employees feel demoralized when you neglect their past success or the areas they have performed very well. You should start the discussion with the successes they have made before chipping in the challenges to help them see that your biggest desire is for them do well.

Discuss ideas for development and action

Even as the appraisal is reflecting on elements of the past, your objective should focus more on the future development and action. What hasn’t been done well should only serve as a springboard to developing a way to move forward and how the employees can achieve their objectives and contribute effectively to the organization’s goal. This motivates the employee more prolonging blames for not doing well. Appraisal process motivates only 20% of employees according to a study reported by breathe. This shows that employers put very little or no effort on employee development.

Finding out how the employees are positioning themselves to be useful in your company is also important during the performance appraisal. You should find out what plans the employees have for their careers and the skills they are looking to acquire to discharge their duties effectively. Just find out if they also align with your company’s goal.

Agree on the required action plan

To facilitate the employee growth and development, you must reach an agreement with the employee on the next line of action. This should be based on the performance review result. With the in mind, the plans to be set must be achievable and both parties must be involved in the plan to make it more effective. Any action plan agreed on must have deadlines and a means of evaluation.

Summarise the meeting and appreciate all for support

Summarizing all that has been discussed is an ideal way of concluding the meeting. Also, remind those of outstanding actions for a way forward about their fresh commitment. It’s better to plan when next you would meet again for another performance review. Whilst this helps clarify the employees on their ability to give feedback, it also allows you to initiate regular checks on the employees and a feedback habit.

Knowing how to conduct an employee appraisal meeting is a big advantage because it helps you to achieve the goal of conducting one. This will also boost your organization’s chances of attracting and retaining the best talents since your employee performance appraisals will also show that your employees have a future in your company.

Diana Coker
Diana Coker is a staff writer at The HR Digest, based in New York. She also reports for brands like Technowize. Diana covers HR news, corporate culture, employee benefits, compensation, and leadership. She loves writing HR success stories of individuals who inspire the world. She’s keen on political science and entertains her readers by covering usual workplace tactics.

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