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1. Surprise feedback: managers often wait until annual performance reviews to give feedback.

Feedback should flow in both directions all year long, not just at review time. To avoid surprising employees during their annual reviews, managers should make an effort to communicate with direct reports on a regular basis. Employees should know when they did a great job AND when improvement is expected.

2. Delayed or cancelled reviews: the negative effects of postponing reviews.

Performance appraisals may be uncomfortable and unpleasant, but they must be done. Delaying the process will only result in further issues. Employees may lose respect for managers who do not perform timely reviews and the biggest impact will be on actual performance. Regular, constructive reviews are an essential part of improving performance at work. Employees who don’t know that there are problems with their performance will not be able to make improvements.

3. Cookie cutter reviews: using the same review for each role and each employee is an ineffective way to manage performance.

Every role in an organisation is different, and it is important that your review system takes this into account. Performance appraisals should be tailored to each role so that employees receive the most accurate, relevant feedback. It’s important that your appraisal system takes into account the specific duties and responsibilities of each role.

4. Only the reviewer’s opinion counts: reviewing employee performance based on one opinion will not provide complete feedback.

It’s human nature that managers sometimes have biased opinions about employee performance. This is why it is so important that performance appraisals include feedback from other sources. Managers should speak with other managers, direct reports, and the employees themselves when they collect feedback on improving performance. 360 degree feedback is a useful tool for collecting feedback from multiple sources.

Performance appraisals can be a difficult task for management to do effectively but they are critical to the success of the organisation. Avoiding these common mistakes will ensure your review process accomplishes your performance objectives.

Download our free white paper Top 10 Tips for Running a 360 Degree Feedback Project to find out how to implement an effective 360 review process.