Manager's Performance Development Guide

If you do not have a formal performance appraisal process, don’t worry, there’s a better way!

Over the past 10-15 years an increasing wave of articles and studies recommend elimination of this most stressful ordeal for managers and employees, “the dreaded performance appraisal”.

Employee survey comments are fairly consistent

  • They are a waste of time and demotivate employees! The rating system is demeaning!
  • They serve no purpose and are just a paper exercise!
  • They don’t assess my real work or provide useful feedback!

Harvard Business Review – “Employers are also finally acknowledging that both supervisors and subordinates despise the appraisal process.”

So what now?

Employers need to manage for results! Employees want recognition for work well done. They also want fair, relevant feedback to build their capabilities.

The good news is that there is a shift to a less time consuming, less bureaucratic and more relevant approach, ongoing coaching.

Background notes

  • Managers tell us that the vast majority of employees want to and can do a good job.
  • Increasingly, employees are looking for learning, growth and opportunity.
  • Managers now seek employees who demonstrate they can learn and are open to feedback.
  • Performance is all year round, so ongoing contact works more effectively.

A simpler, more effective approach to performance development

  1. Commit – to coaching employees to succeed (They succeed-you succeed)
  2. Clarity – collaborate on clear expectations (desired results and behaviours) and a process.
  3. Contact – meet several times a year for progress consultations,
    • To initially set goals, then meet over time to confirm progress towards those goals
    • To make any changes needed if circumstances have changed
    • To provide positive feedback for work well done, coaching and support when needed,
    • To intervene if performance slips.
  4. Hold a “no surprises” wrap up meeting – to summarize your previous discussion and then plan for the next year.

The coaching approach enhances ongoing communication, prompter more timely feedback and recognition of work well done. Collaborating with employees engages them and increases accountability. Also, if problems arise, that can be addressed sooner than later.

Its’ simpler, more efficient, lowers stress for both parties, plus targets ongoing performance.



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HR Strategies Inc. was founded for one purpose –
to make things simpler.

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