Time for your annual review…Today I am hosting a guest post from Sean Conrad of Halogen Software. Don’t worry, this is NOT a post extolling the virtues of Halogen Software, instead Sean is talking today about employee engagement and the performance management process. Take a read below and let me know what you think.
I’ve been wondering…
I’ve been reading a lot lately about strategies to improve employee engagement and retention. And I seem to keep coming up against the same stuff.
People want feedback, they want direction or goals, they want development opportunities, they want to be recognized and rewarded, they want to feel they’re contributing to their organization, they want a good relationship with their manager.
Without these things, they become disengaged. Or when the opportunity comes up, they leave.
Now at the same time, I’ve been seeing a number of articles and blogs that bash employee performance appraisals, saying they’re ineffective, demoralizing, time-wasters, archaic, etc.
But aren’t performance appraisals supposed to give employees feedback, direction, development and recognition? Aren’t they supposed to promote dialogue between managers and employees?
Is the problem that performance appraisals are bad or that we do them badly?
Maybe people hate them because we tend to focus on the ratings and rakings too much. Maybe it’s because we focus too much on giving the employee feedback on the times they slipped up and fixing the problems rather than focusing on all the great things they did and encouraging more. Maybe it’s because we forget to focus on development and career progression. Maybe it’s because we forget that performance management is supposed to be an ongoing, two-way dialogue between managers and employees, and instead make this once a year event.
If we do away with performance appraisals altogether, as many are suggesting, how will we meet our employees’ needs relative to engagement and retention? Any ideas?
Sean Conrad is a Certified Human Capital Strategist and Senior Product Analyst at Halogen Software. You can read more of his musing on HR and talent management best-practices on the Halogen Software blog.