Performance reviews are often dreaded by all involved, but it doesn't necessarily have to be that way. With some tact and guidelines, the employer can make the process better than expected and keeping the blasts from the past to a minimum is a great way to do just that! Though there are a lot of variables depending on the chosen performance appraisal method, it's important that you focus your effort on looking to the future instead of getting stuck on past successes and failures. Keep reading to find out why it's so important to be future-oriented when conducting employee reviews!
6 Reasons You Shouldn't Dwell on the Past
- The key word is dwell.
Acknowledge? Yes. Dwell? No! You can take a trip down memory lane, just don't drive too long on that road before you take a detour to future goals.
- Consider your employee's growth.
If you're performing annual reviews, there's a good chance that your employee has changed a lot since their last review. If you dwell on the past, you're not reviewing the person based on who he or she is currently but are rather reviewing who they used to be. This often isn't beneficial to the employer or the employee.
- Encourage high performers.
When it comes to high performers, it's especially important that the employer emphasizes future plans and goals for professional development. If someone is an excellent employee, they're likely looking for ways to learn and grow. They recognize the importance of forward motion and they're hoping you will too.
- Think hard about underperformers.
However, on the opposite side of the spectrum we have the underperformers. If you have nothing good to say about their past or their future, then it might be time to look into alternate options.
- Encourage growth, not shame.
If you spend too much time reiterating past mistakes, the employee will likely get bogged down instead of walking away motivated and ready for the newest challenge.
Why You Should Think Forward
While the ultimate goal for everyone is to make money, employers are always looking for ways to make processes more efficient, customers happier, and employees more productive. With this in mind, it's important that employers are looking forward as a motivational tool for reviews. Taking the time to focus on the future informs employees of potential opportunities but also shows them that you care about their professional development. Expressing to your employees that they matter to you can go further than you think and will motivate them to be the best employee they can be.
Complacency Doesn't Work
Performance reviews shouldn't just be another item to scratch off your list. They should be viewed as a step towards growth for you company and employee. Complacency stifles improvement and without change, there is no growth. This is an opportunity to create room for your employee to thrive for the good of themselves and the company.