Performance reviews are essential for companies because they must keep an eye on employees’ contributions to the business. But they can be taxing for managers and stressful for employees. Managers often struggle while measuring the performance of team members and engaging in feedback conversations. At the same time, employees fear detailed scrutiny of their actions. Fortunately, employers can do their bit to reduce the negativity around feedback and make people more comfortable with the process. Let us share a few actionable insights to eliminate the anxiety of performance reviews.
Integrate reviews with goal-setting
The best way to make performance reviews more worthwhile and less stressful is to integrate them with goal-setting. Team members feel less anxious when they see the bigger picture that focuses on measuring their strengths and areas of improvement instead of picking flaws in their work. Moreover, setting goals according to individual performances motivates people to give their best and invest extra effort in improvements.
Focus on the future
Employees tend to fear reviews because they recap the past and look for faults already committed. As an employer, you can help them overcome the fear by ensuring that feedback is future-focused. Besides reducing anxiety, the approach makes more sense because people cannot reverse past mistakes. But a little guidance and training can help them avoid similar mistakes in the future. Even as you evaluate past actions, combine reviews with measures to address potential problems ahead.
Get a 360 degree perspective
A 360-degree perspective is another way to rework the process for cutting down the anxiety of your employees. You will probably want to know what is a 360 review because the concept is relatively new. Essentially, it is about drawing feedback from managers and anyone else the person has worked with. Since managers are not the only people assessing their work, employees worry less about bias and errors. Besides being objective, the feedback is hands-on and actionable, making it more valuable for employers.
Implement two-way conversations
Implementing two-way conversations is another surefire way to make performance reviews less stressful for managers and team members. Ensure that both parties get a chance to discuss, share, and find clear pathways to improvements. Moreover, they personalize the process as managers identify individual challenges and suggest practical solutions for resolving them. Such conversations create clarity and promote trust, so employees feel less anxious even as you assess their work.
Offer constructive feedback
Negative feedback elevates stress, and it becomes an integral part of the review process. The easiest way to set things right is by ensuring that managers offer actionable and constructive feedback to their team members. They should not highlight weaknesses and problems, but provide meaningful solutions to address them. You can go the extra mile by providing employees with training initiatives and tools as a chance to change things for the better.
Employee performance reviews are inherently anxiety-inducing, but employers can help people overcome the stress and see them in a positive light. Follow these simple tips to make them more meaningful and less stressful.