It’s the start of a new year. You just finished conducting performance appraisal interviews for your team members, making sure to define their objectives and discuss your professional relationship. But listen up, this when your real job as a manager begins! Here we’re going to go over how you can ensure that appraisal interviews are positive and beneficial for everyone throughout the year.

Re-evaluate appraisals’ frequency

The annual performance appraisal interview is the most important time of the year for your employees, as it provides them with an opportunity to receive or provide feedback on the quality of their work, the work atmosphere, and reflect on and express their ambitions. So, should you really be waiting an entire year before discussing such major topics? There’s nothing worse than an appraisal interview used as a way for managers get to know their employees for the first time, or the other way around.

You shouldn’t be taking only one day out of the year to take on your role as a manager or perform appraisals. Remember to maintain an official annual performance appraisal interview to carry out an overall assessment. But make sure you meet your employees for periodic interviews throughout the year to go over their objectives, follow up on major projects, and reschedule deadlines according to requirements.

Know your team

One of the top goals of a manager should be to get to know their employees and what they do. This will help managers better evaluate their employees when the time comes. Managers spending time with their team members will only streamline the appraisal process, simplify it and make it more objective. Managers must take interest in their teams’ tasks and monitor their work throughout the entire year, not just come appraisal season. This will help managers maintain a close relation and direct communication with their employees. Regular follow-up will eliminate the majority of conflicts that may arise during performance appraisal interviews. It’s best to deal with issues gradually than to leave everything for the last minute.

Keep your promises

Annual appraisals are the perfect time to talk about training, career opportunities and salary raises (even though we suggest scheduling an entirely different meeting for this). If managers are committed to their employees’ training, then they must do everything in their power (see HR, set reminders, etc.) to plan their training programmes as quickly as possible. Also, if managers start a conversation with their employees regarding a possible promotion, they must keep them informed about any and all internal mobility opportunities!

This may seem pretty logical, but judgement can get influenced by the managerial cloud, threatening the manager-employee relationship. Managers must find their way through the haze to avoid losing their teams’ trust.

Ensure employee cultural fit

This is an important element to consider in the recruiting process. Recruiters must make sure that new hires match their company’s culture and values. It’s then up to managers to ensure that employees continue to fit in with the company’s culture throughout their career. As appraisers, managers must not limit themselves to only following up on their employees’ objectives and results. They must look at their employees as individuals. This is certainly one of the most difficult tasks for managers, as it requires more subjectivity. Culture, values, and vision are some of employees’ major levers for motivation. Thus, it is crucial to have fully understand your employees to be able to successfully carry out and add value to their cultural integration.

Always remember your role as a manager, but never limit yourself

Managers don’t just administer and coordinate their teams. Managers must also serve as role models for their employees. Ultimately, they are responsible for their team’s success and accomplishments.  Managers must not only appraise their employees, but also aim to support them throughout their career and guide them to success.

Managers and employees must work as a team and serve as mentors to each other. Managers can learn just as much from employees; they must demonstrate humility and accept feedback and criticism from their teams.

This daily exchange of values is exactly what structures manager-employee relationships in the best possible conditions, and this relationship is the foundation to your company’s success.

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