How to do a performance review

What are your thoughts when it comes on how to do a performance review? If you’ve done a few but found them uninspiring, stilted and have come away with a sore throat, chances are you did too much of the hard work! Getting employees engaged in a performance review is key.

So – we wanted to see how to do a performance review with employee tips that you can pass on that will help get them excited about the process, whilst also giving you some starting points and housekeeping that can ensure you make the best of the big event!

How to do a performance review tip 1: Come to the meeting prepared

Before the meeting, consider what you need to discuss and any specific outcomes you would like. Be organised and remind yourself of the employee’s objectives and development actions in advance. This will save time, allow you to focus on potential barriers and how these might be overcome, and how you can support your employee.

How to do a performance review tip 2: Make your employee the focus and the priority

It is important for your employee to know that you value them and their role within the company. Set aside time for your
employee; and during that time make them and their work the focus. Discuss how they are performing, explore their strengths and any issues they are having. Ensure they understand how their role contributes to business priorities and
success of the organisation.

How to do a performance review tip 3: Keep it informal but structured

Informal 1:1 reviews are a great way to get the most out of your employees.
More frequent communication between managers and employees promotes open, healthy and honest communication.
This dialogue means that you will be better equipped to deal with issues as they arise, ultimately leading to a more
productive organisation.

How to do a performance review tip 4: Reward and recognise outstanding behaviour

If your employees are hitting their targets, or if they are going above and beyond, be sure to mention this during your meeting.
Don’t underestimate the importance of recognition, which can be linked to improved morale, engagement and productivity. Rewards don’t have to come in the forms of lavish bonuses. A simple expression of your gratitude for a job well done is often enough.

How to do a performance review tip 5: Be open to feedback and change

Ask your employees periodically if they think there are any areas within the organisation that could stand to be
improved and if they have any ideas. You might be surprised at how constructive these ideas can be and how they might revolutionise the company.

How to do a performance review tip 6: Address personal development (PDP/DAP)

Development Action Plans are a great way of setting career/skill development
objectives. This should be a collaborative effort, where employees consider their own areas for improvement too. It is a great opportunity to reflect on areas of strengths and areas for development so that the employee can be more productive in the future. Supporting employee career progression can lead to reduced turnover, more skilled employees
and enhanced loyalty to the organisation.

Employee tips to pass on

As promised – employees need to know why performance reviews aren’t chance for a verbal kicking and can be a two way street. Pass on these tips for employees who are wondering what happens at a performance review.

Employees: What to do before your performance review

1. Acknowledge the role and importance of regular performance discussions

We all need to know how we are doing, and feedback is key to discovering. So, embrace your performance discussion
as a way of getting feedback about your work. Similarly, your performance discussion is an opportunity for you to provide feedback and seek support.

2. Define your purpose: what do you want from your performance discussion?

Think about what you would like to achieve from your performance discussion. Is there something you’d really like to spend time discussing with your manager? Do you want to discuss your future in the organisation or opportunities to learn and grow within your role or team?

3. Insist on regular performance discussions

It’s your performance discussion and you are entitled to it. If you’re due or overdue a performance discussion, either make
an appointment or discuss arranging one with your manager.

4. Prepare for your performance discussion

Preparing yourself for your performance discussion is vitally important. This ranges from reflecting on your objectives
and your development actions, gathering relevant information, evidence and feedback from colleagues, customers
and stakeholders. Are you aware of the learning opportunities available to you? Is there someone you would like to work with/ learn from? Do you have any feedback points you’d like to share with your manager.

5. Follow up on your actions
Make sure you follow up after the discussion; any notes should be written up. These are not purely a record for file; they should be actively utilised to refer to and help in reflecting on progress.

6. Be persistent
You may well need to prompt your manager to follow up on agreed actions. Take responsibility, and make sure you get out of this what you need to.
7. Get feedback regularly

Reflect on the frequency with which you are getting feedback. If you believe you need it more regularly, it is absolutely
right to ask for more regular discussions.
You may also want to be asking for feedback from others, not just your immediate manager. Ask your peer group, your manager’s manager, customers, anybody who you believe can give you constructive input.