4 Reasons You Should (Not) Trash Company Performance Reviews 

Recently, there’s been a lot of talk as to why companies should just get rid of their performance reviews. They don’t improve performance. No one likes them. Well, just because you don’t like to give constructive criticism doesn’t mean you should just get rid of it. After all, you still had to eat your broccoli as a child regardless of if you thought it tasted like dirt, right?

Love them or hate them, performance reviews are a necessary use of time and are critical to the success of your performance management system. Most of the arguments to get rid of the performance appraisals all together are largely based on poor performance management practices. You can, however, improve the effectiveness of performance reviews in your organization without trashing them. Here are four reasons to keep them around:


  • They do improve team performance.


Performance reviews of the 1950s may not have been conducive to the improving employee performance, and that’s the problem. The organizations that say performance reviews are merely a formality and don’t truly ameliorate the work of the team use an antiquated process. Companies that see performance reviews as more than merely a formality do experience a 14.9% lower turnover rate because they conduct them more often than just once a year.


  • You can empower management.


One of the problems with employee performance reviews is simply that managers don’t like to give criticism because they don’t know how to give it. As an employer, you can solve this. You can empower your management team by providing the supervisory training necessary to conduct more effective performance reviews. Nearly half – 46% – want training in how to properly and successfully conduct performance reviews. When your managers know how to give praise and criticism, they are empowered to conduct better appraisals.


  • Employers can ensure consistency.


Often, performance reviews are criticized for a lack of consistency from employee to employee. However, as with any other process, employers can set standards. Establish goals and expectations before the performance appraisal so employees know what their supervisors look for when evaluating their work. Paul Falcone (@PaulFalconeHR), a Senior Human Resources Executive at Grifols BioScience, said:

“So don’t think of the process of goal-setting as an afterthought once the backward-looking annual performance review is given: see it as a new way for your staffers to reinvent themselves in light of the new challenges that may be coming your company’s way.”


  • Employees want performance reviews.


Not only do your employees need regular performance reviews to know their progress on goals, they want performance reviews. More importantly, they want the constructive, or corrective, feedback from their supervisors. In fact, 57% of employees want the corrective feedback. It’s a learning and growth opportunity for employees, so give them the tools they need for development and provide some areas for improvement.

Just like broccoli at dinner when you were a child, you may not like it, but the performance appraisal is a necessary practice. Despite the growing disdain towards performance reviews, organizations still need to use the performance management method in order to track employee growth and maintain goal adherence. Employees want to improve their performance, and a thorough appraisal is the perfect way to do that. Even though each performance appraisal will be slightly different because your employees are different, you can ensure consistency by establishing goals and expectations before the review process. Regardless of the growing negativity surrounding performance reviews, if conducted in accordance with the emotional intelligence of your team, they will improve performance.