Performance Reviews One Of The Last Important Parts of Managing Performance

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Once Employees Understand Their Jobs, Performance Appraisals Are A Breeze

Performance review meetings refer to meetings between manager and employee for the purpose of communicating and reviewing performance. It’s common for these meetings to result in some sort of evaluation or appraisal, which is related to the performance review, but different.


Evaluation (or appraisal) of performance focuses on how well or how badly the employee has done. Because evaluations are usually undertaken for the purposes of rewarding and punishing employees, they tend to put manager and employee on different sides of the table.

A performance review, while it may have an evaluative component, is focused on improving performance regardless of the current levels of performance. It’s a problem-solving process that puts employee and manager on the same side.

The distinction gets fuzzy in real life, of course. You can use appraisals to improve performance and you can include appraisals as part of performance reviews, but it’s important to pay attention to the different focus and purposes. I firmly believe we should stop using terms like “performance appraisal” and “employee evaluation” and instead use “performance review” to reflect a way of looking at performance that is intended to add value to the company because it helps managers and employees improve performance over time.

Since this book is about conducting effective performance reviews, you’ll find in subsequent chapters a lot more detail about the process and how to make reviews work. One final point: there’s a tendency to think about performance reviews as a “oncea- year event”—and that’s not the case. In fact it’s quite possible to have review meetings at any time. Some managers have short, five-minute performance review mini-meetings once a month.


About Company

Bacal & Associates was founded in 1992 by consultant and book author, Robert Bacal. Robert's books on performance management and reviews have been published by McGraw-Hill. He is available for consultation, training and keynote speaking on performance and management at work.


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We Believe

  • Performance management and appraisal MUST be a partnership between manager and employee where BOTH benefit.
  • Performance management can be the lever for improved employee engagement.
  • The review process is the LEAST important part of performance management
  • If managers aren't managing employee performance, why are they there?

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