9 tips for the performance review

Two people having a performance review. 9 tips for the performance review.

January is here, and with a new year and new opportunities comes performance reviews!

But January is a busy month. You must review the year that just ended, while also getting started on the plans you've made for the new year. So how do you prioritize performance reviews in the midst of all this?

We've created a 9-point list for those who are conducting performance reviews, so you know where to start - Are you ready?

Here are our 9 tips for the performance review!

  1. Preparation is the key to success

Before you start the conversation, review the employee's performance, results and notes from previous conversations. In that way you`ll have a good place to start. Check if what you discussed in the previous conversation has actually been followed up on, so you're well prepared. It's also important that you're up to date on the company's overall goals and strategies, so you`ll be able to link the employee's goals to the company's goals.

  1. Create a positive atmosphere

Start the conversation with an open and supportive tone. It's important that the employee feels that this is a place where they can be both open and honest. You can do this by encouraging sharing different thoughts, concerns and ideas; you simply need to create a positive space and atmosphere.

  1. Clear goals and expectations

Review expectations and goals so that you have a common understanding of status quo and where you want to go from here. This will ensure that you are working towards the same goals and in the same direction throughout the year. It is also important to clarify what you will do if goals chang during the year. How do you follow up this?

  1. Give constructive and clear feedback

Use concrete examples to avoid misunderstandings. Give praise for what is good, while addressing development opportunities in a constructive and orderly manner. Listen to the employee's views and allow different opinions and emotions to surface. When you work together to find solutions to challenges, you`ll both experience ownership of the plans.

When giving feedback, it may be worth taking a look at the so-called "sandwich method": Start with a positive feedback, then address the area for improvement, before finishing with another positive feedback.

  1. Personal and professional balance

Respect the boundaries between personal and professional issues. By this we mean that the conversation should be focused on job-related issues. It`s important to remember that the employee is a separate person with their own personal life and challenges.

  1. Future goals

Discuss the employee's career plans and future goals. Where does the employee see themselves in the future? It’s also important to clarify how these plans and goals fit in with the development of the company, and what skills that are needed to achieve these goals. It is important to discuss opportunities for professional development and skills enhancement.

  1. Active listening

To create a meaningful conversation, active listening is imperative. By this we mean: paying full attention to what your employee is actually saying, showing interest and understanding of what is being said. Don't interrupt - but leave room for your employee to share what's on their mind. Repeat and summarize what you have heard, so that you both agree on what has actually been said. Active listening not only contributes to better communication, but also to building trust and respect.

Bonus tip: Being a good listener takes practice. You need to practice not thinking about what to say, but just listening to what is being said.

  1. Plan follow-up

Create a plan for follow-up conversations and evaluation points. When will you sit down to discuss this next time? And how do you both ensure progress?

  1. Make sure you have really good system support

Performance reviews are important and a great way to start the year. But if the plans are left in a drawer or stored in a Word document, that no one looks at, they are of little value. Make sure you have a system that makes it easy to follow up on goals and plans, both for you and for the employee. This way, you create value for both of you - and for the company. Can we strike a blow for goal and employee development from SAP SuccessFactors?

Good luck!

Want to know more about how to motivate your employees