How To Give a Bad Performance Review (With Steps You Can Use)

“Caroline, you have failed to meet the deadlines way too many times this quarter, We expect more dedication from you this quarter.” How many of us are ready to face negative reviews about our work like this? Not all employees are usually open to negative performance review. Sometimes, it is demotivating to listen to negative performance reviews and employees also tend to get defensive at times.

As a manager it is hard to give negative performance, particularly when your organizational work culture is positive and you still have to give the review because it is important for the team and the company’s growth.

Here are nine things to consider if you need to give a negative performance review.
  1. Have your employee complete self-assessment first. …
  2. Be open to amendments. …
  3. Don’t make it personal. …
  4. Focus on strengths. …
  5. Use concrete examples. …
  6. Base the review against their job description. …
  7. Include action items for moving forward. …
  8. Follow up.

How to Deliver a Negative Performance Review | Dodging Landmines

What to include in a performance review

When youre delivering a performance review, try to include:

Why do employers give unfavorable performance reviews?

Employers use performance reviews to help increase employee outcomes, which can positively impact the organizations revenue and profitability. Performance reviews can also have a positive impact on employee satisfaction, growth and development. Assessing team members workplace performance can also support other areas of a companys mission, such as giving back to a community, by ensuring all employees are doing their best.

Sometimes employers provide feedback that highlights areas in which an employee can improve, either their overall performance or in specific areas. Many companies use a structured system to measure employee outcomes, and these scores can inform performance reviews. Employers might also leverage self-reviews in advance of performance reviews, which can inform the content of the review sessions.

How to give a bad performance review

Here are some steps you can use to provide a productive performance review to help boost employee performance:

1. Prepare ahead of time

Learn all you can about an employee and their performance before delivering a review. Many employers choose to address performance issues when they arise so that there are no surprises for the employee during the review session. Evaluate measurable data related to the employees performance, such as output and productivity in the context of the companys key performance indicators (KPIs).

2. Leverage self-assessment

Prior to the performance review, invite the employee to complete a self-assessment. Try using an established form or rubric that applies to each individual in a particular position to help establish performance norms. Employee self-assessments can help you understand the way the individual perceives their own performance and even identify factors you might not have been aware of beforehand. Self-assessment can also help employees take ownership of their own performance and success.

3. Plan your meeting

Establish a time to meet with the employee receiving the performance review. Be sure to consider the employees schedule and other factors, such as particularly busy times, when planning the meeting. Your company might also mandate performance reviews at specific times or intervals, in which case its important to stay on that established schedule. Consider whether you want the employee to be able to implement any suggestions for improvement immediately or if it would be better to provide your review before a weekend or longer break.

4. Establish a positive tone

When you meet with the employee for their performance review, be sure to establish a positive tone. You might do so by providing positive feedback on a specific task or favorable quality, for example. This can help maintain an atmosphere of support and open communication, which might help the employee feel more motivated to implement constructive feedback. Consider taking a coaching or counseling approach to delivering an unfavorable review. These types of strategies may help inspire better performance in the future and maintain a positive employer/employee relationship.

5. Open a dialogue

It can be helpful to allow for a two-way dialogue when delivering a challenging performance review. This can allow you to understand the employees perspective and gain insight into the reasons for their performance patterns. Consider whether there are details that might inform your suggestions and feedback, such as unknown challenges or changes to the role.

6. Offer suggestions

Be sure to offer actionable suggestions to improve the employees performance. Keep these suggestions within the scope of their specific job duties, focusing on the job itself rather than the individuals personal characteristics or qualities. Offer measurable outcomes, so the employee can track their progress toward meeting the standards for a positive performance review. Establish a time for a follow-up session if it would be helpful, and consider offering resources such as training or other materials to help the employee gain the skills they need.

7. Document your review

Be sure to gather and retain all documentation related to the performance review. This can be particularly useful if you want to compare an employees later performance to their current outcomes, for example. Here are some of the types of information and documents you may wish to keep on file after each performance review:

Many employers also provide an agreement that the employee and supervisor both sign at the end of a performance review to signal that they both understand the details they discussed and any terms associated with the review.

FAQ

How do I tell an employee about a bad performance?

To that end, here are 10 things to consider as you prepare for a talk about poor performance to get the most of the conversation:
  1. Create a safe space. …
  2. Don’t put it off. …
  3. Recognise the problem, research the problem. …
  4. Document and make clear what is happening. …
  5. Don’t ask why, find out why. …
  6. Set/Re-Set Expectations.

How do you give bad feedback examples?

Here are a few examples of negative feedback in the workplace:
  1. “You interrupted your teammate during yesterday’s presentation and I lost my train of thought. Don’t you think you could’ve waited for your teammate to finish speaking first?”
  2. “You have been arriving late to work throughout the week.

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