How to Communicate an Oral or Written Performance Review

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Performance evaluations are an important part of employee management.
Performance evaluations are an important part of employee management. (Image: Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images)

Communicating a performance evaluation properly can mean the difference between a long-term productive employee and a short-term employee. Sharpen your interpersonal skills before you sit down with an employee for a performance evaluation. Interpersonal communication involves talking, but it also means listening effectively to what your employee has to say. The most effective performance evaluations give constructive feedback, but also allow employees to openly discuss their positions with their supervisors. Practice active listening by paraphrasing what the employees says, asking questions and asking for clarification if you don't understand something.

How to Communicate an Oral or Written Performance Review

Write your performance review. The written version will serve as an outline for orally delivering the feedback to the employee. Include five main areas in the evaluation, including key responsibilities, expected results, actual results, rating and comments. Divide performance ratings into five categories: O for outstanding; VG for very good; G for good; BG for below good; and U for unsatisfactory. Fill out the review based on the employee's performance.

Set up a time to meet with the employee that is convenient for both of you, ensuring as few interruptions as possible. Meet in a quiet room with a door that closes. Turn off all cell phones. Begin the review by explaining your company's process for performance evaluation. Provide the employee with a written copy of the evaluation so that he can follow along. Discuss each key responsibility, the expected results, actual results and the rating the employee received.

Explain each rating thoroughly and provide a rationale for each one. Allow the employee to comment and discuss each key responsibility, result and rating. Encourage him to ask questions and provide feedback of his own. Listen actively to all questions and feedback. If some ratings are low, engage the employee in determining the root cause for unsatisfactory results. Brainstorm with the employee to find a solution. Wrapping up the session, ask the employee if he has any questions concerning the evaluation process. As a closing statement, ask him if there is anything that was left out that he would like to add.

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