Epiphanies for Everybody

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How to do performance reviews

January 24, 20221 min read

How to do performance reviews

Feedback is incredibly important. It’s frequently necessary to receive feedback in order to improve. So, how do we get it? Contrary to popular practice, performance reviews are useless. They’re useless for a lot of reasons, but one of the key ones is timeliness. In order for feedback to be effective, it has to be close to the event that triggered it, so that there’s plenty of time to remember the circumstances and evaluate the feedback against what happened. Performance reviews break this necessary connection, so are functionally useless.

If you are genuinely interested in making feedback work, this is how you do it:

Rule #1: Don’t do performance reviews.
Rule #2: Make feedback a constant process
Rule #3: Teach people how to request and receive feedback that helps them grow.
Rule #4: Teach people how to give feedback that helps others grow.

That’s it.

Most companies that provide any training on feedback focus on how to give it. But giving feedback is less important than receiving it, if the goal is learning. Take the time to learn when and how feedback works, and then teach your people to request constructive feedback. You’ll be better for it.

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