Having a Performance Discussion

Initiating a Performance Discussion
Although traditional performance reviews with broad-based ratings are becoming a thing of the past, according to a 2016 Deloitte study, titled, Meta Analysis Research Paper, “Employee engagement is still a headline issue throughout business and HR. An overwhelming majority in this year’s survey (85%) ranked engagement as a top priority (that is important or very important).

The article goes on to describe a new wave of engagement, “Building a compelling and meaningful work environment is a complex process. At the same time, the world of employee engagement and feedback is exploding. Annual engagement surveys are being replaced by “employee listening” tools such as pulse surveys, anonymous social tools, and regular feedback check-ins by managers. All these new approaches and tools have given rise to the “employee listening” officer, an important new role for HR.”
With only 46 percent of the surveyed companies responding that they are “prepared to tackle the engagement challenge,” what does that mean for the rest of us?
There have been many numerous articles written on the “new wave” of performance evaluations. And, by now, it should be expected that everyone would have adopted a new way of measuring their employees’ performance. But, what we have found is this: Although annual evaluations are painful…….change is even more painful. A 2014 study in the Strategy + Business journal noted that employees often react so poorly to being graded………. that they are “intensely inclined to ignore feedback, pushback against stretch goals and reject the example of positive role models.”
After years of doing it wrong, your managers may be throwing up their arms and choosing to say as little as possible just to avoid the pain.
With the new wave of performance management tools, HR professionals are able to leverage a manager’s weekly or monthly conversation into a workforce evaluation based on business outcomes. The process has become much more standardized with Performance Process templates that help managers get through the uncomfortable part of evaluating performance. Using templates provides opportunities to coach, praise and even begin those dreaded Performance Improvement conversations. The use of Performance Process templates, will also lead to stronger predictors of overall success as well as predictors of attrition risks.
Technology Has the Potential to Make Tracking Clearer
In nearly every industry in every country, personnel are engaging with technology more often. From email and company forums to messaging services and apps, enterprise software is facilitating more conversations across more avenues than ever before.
What that means for performance management is that there’s a significant vein of data available to tap to evaluate long-term progress. As everyone is enabled to interact with more technology, online systems become easier to use and maintain. This applies to both management and employees who are better able to navigate through online forms with greater understanding supported by intuitive tools embedded within the system.
Without a platform to gather disparate data, analysis is not always available because the information is on so many unique systems. That means performance reviews and calibrations still maintain a manual element that is tedious and leaves the potential for human error. Calculations derived purely by people also create room for biased reviews that can be based on relationships between the manager and employee, as opposed to their actual performance.
These concerns are being addressed by new technologies using Performance Review templates.
Problem Solving Through Modern Performance Review Templates
Employee appraisal is still a necessary HR tool to monitor and manage the health of an organization. However, the practice of “rank and yank” performance scoring leading to the dismissal of everyone scoring in the bottom quadrant is quickly being replaced by frequent coaching tools that aid in retention, identification of hidden skills and even recruitment.
Small businesses and major corporations alike are ending the rank and yank practice, largely to address workforce unhappiness and the challenges of the Millennial employee. Even GE, one of the largest proponents of ranking systems that compared all employees relative to their peers, has ended its annual review program for its roughly 300,000 employees. Adobe, Microsoft, Accenture and many more have already following suit.
Most of the outdated ranking processes are being replaced by a modern set of performance review templates that promote consistent check-ins, coaching on-the-go and collaboration. Companies that have thrown out old practices are now empowered by the new technology available to employees and managers during their daily routines.
This guide provides you with a look at ways Performance Check-In Templates can be put into practice and set to use.
A Closer Look
Performance Check-In templates, like the Netflix or PPP (Progress, Plans and Problems Methodology) models, have taken on the look and feel of emails and Web forms that most employees are familiar with today. Sticking to short and simple layouts, they can quickly help both an employee and manager gauge performance on an ongoing basis while addressing short-term and long-term goals.
Implementation of this process is typically straightforward thanks to email and digital calendars. You can set employee check-in options and send out automatic reminders to ensure that employees and their managers check-in when appropriate.
Performance reviews give you a way to evaluate employees against the overall workforce. Providing feedback options lets you know how an employee feels about their current situation through self assessment. Employees are also able to ask for feedback or raise concerns anonymously. Check-in templates create coaching moments while empowering supervisors with options to solve unforeseen bottlenecks as, or before, they occur.
A digital record of these reports and employee requests not only helps HR to address concerns, but makes it easier to elicit assistance from someone beyond the immediate manager. The burden is taken off of the employee, so that their effort is focused on improving, not learning who and how to ask about it.
Coaching and Living Documents
Performance check-in templates are typically structured in a way that emphasizes positive interaction and coaching. They can do this simply, but effectively, by employees asking:

What do I need to stop doing?
What do I need to start doing?
What do I need to continue doing?

…….instead of asking what am I doing wrong?
Coaching is a continuous process of providing feedback and encouraging outstanding performance as well as coaching someone for improvement. By keeping this discussion in a positive light, employees are empowered to take control of the changes and better manage their own behaviors and outcomes.
Provide your fleet of supervisors and managers templates that encourage positive interactions and support ongoing coaching opportunities. Using performance review templates initiate dialog by creating clear expectations for performance. When you provide a performance management system that focuses on coaching, by making imbedded tools available to spark ongoing dialogue, employees are less likely to be surprised about their need for improvement. And like every team, whether it’s football or your customer service department, coaching is necessary for everyone, including those team members who continue to win week after week. Coaching templates provide an excellent tool to reinforce the performance of your high potentials.
Download Templates Here
Optimizing the Review Process with entomo
Bridging all of these new changes and informational needs into the modern HR department are brands like entomo, which provides a core structure to show employees how they are progressing toward specific goals in a meaningful way.
Improve Employee Relationships
Performance review templates from entomo encourage your leadership and HR teams to provide positive, constructive criticism. This structure helps employees receive goal-oriented reviews that translate into specific, achievable actions.
When entomo templates were adopted by a leading Asian multi-national corporation (MNC), the brand was able to achieve an 85% positive feedback benchmark in all employee surveys.
Turn Reviews into KPI Tools
Templated, consistent processes make it easier for reviews to meet four of the key pillars of strong performance management: alignment, coaching, collaboration, and calibration.
Alignment is more than just streamlining the process. Review templates use multiple metrics throughout the year, linking employees to Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) relevant to the specific business goals and organizational strategies.
Coaching on-the-go through a digital review process ensures that physical barriers don’t prevent the process from continuing. entomo provides multiple tools to facilitate the interaction, allowing organizations to have performance data available in real-time. The coaching experience is reinforced by the consistent interaction resulting from the use of templates that help keep performance goals in a positive light. This provides management with the ability to identify and solve issues that multiple employees face, thereby improving morale.
Collaboration of the data using a centralized reporting system allows HR managers to create a 10,000-foot view of their organization. Platforms from entomo facilitate analysis that can lead to better data-driven business decisions and insights.
One benefit of a single platform is that it provides a more holistic evaluation of your workforce. Ranking, grouping, and sorting functions that critique the workforce serve as tools available to look for areas of improvement.
Simple sharing of reviews and information with appropriate supervisors provides HR professionals and managers with the ability to check-in and understand employee performance changes, improvements, and newly identified needs. Creating standardization across all processes allows calibration to occur…..no matter how many employees, how many departments or how many locations.
Calibration is essentially the ability to rank groups based on data, independent of the individuals who take down that information. An easier, more effective review process is possible even when there is turnover in all areas of management, thanks to a system that maintains information and uses data to track goals, meaning there’s always a reference point.
entomo offers stakeholders, shareholders and executives the entire scope of visibility necessary to manage change, capture market share and yield a much greater ROI. If your company wants to achieve this type of success, take the leap and join the new Performance Revolution.

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