Performance review meetings can be nerve-racking for anyone. As employees prepare for these meetings, they know they are going to be evaluated on their projects, how they work and even on their attitude. Now with many employees working from home, performance reviews can look and feel a little different. Managers still need to give feedback to their employees, despite not seeing them as often. While performance reviews can be stressful, they play a great role in engagement and overall employee experience.
A recent survey conducted by Gartner suggests that 82% of company leaders plan to allow employees to work remotely some of the time. This poses a challenge for managers to adopt a new way of conducting performance reviews to make sure that all employees get the recognition and feedback they need to move forward in their careers.
Tips for Conducting Performance Reviews for Remote and Hybrid Employees
Here are some of our tips to help you ease into conducting performance reviews for your remote and hybrid employees.
Tip #1: Focus on the results
It doesn’t matter if you see your employee every day or once a week or just over video meetings. Managers need to focus on setting overall goals and deadlines and evaluate whether their employees are delivering their projects and tasks. It’s the outcome that matters most, not when and where they complete the projects. In addition to the results, managers need to build trust with their employees and avoid micromanaging them during their projects.
Tip #2: Foster open and ongoing communication
Trust comes from ongoing communication and being able to have effective and honest feedback from both parties. Focusing on two-way conversation is critical to ensure everyone is on the same page. Since your employees are working remotely, keep communication lines as open as possible to allow for check-ins, support, and discussions when a problem arises. Your employees should feel comfortable that they can approach you when needed.
Tip #3: Encourage self-evaluation
Try to maintain transparency with your team. Giving your employees a chance to share their feedback and talk about their skills and complexities is a great way for you to understand your team better. Your employees can also share feedback on the team and what they think needs to improve. Self-evaluations can be an eye-opener and can help managers understand how they can continue to enhance the efficiency of their teams. Furthermore, self-evaluations also foster motivation and trust and give the employee a chance to talk about things you may miss if you do not see them in person every day. This is also a fantastic way to help reduce anxiety and uncertainty among employees if you bring them into the process early and make them part of the planning.
Tip #4: Communicate with compassion and empathy
Effective communication is key to keeping your employees and yourself on the same page. When conducting performance reviews, it’s important you deliver good and bad reviews with empathy and constructive feedback, so your employee doesn’t feel attacked. This can be a good chance to recognize what your employees’ strengths are and how they can improve in the areas where they may struggle..
Tip #5: Track progress
When it comes to giving and receiving feedback, it’s important to keep track of changes and progress made from past evaluations. Is your employee focusing on strengths talked about in previous reviews, or are they taking on more responsibility and getting overwhelmed? Make sure you don’t fall into the trap of micromanaging but continue to monitor how your employee is progressing professionally and where they are improving or need more guidance.
Effective Performance Reviews with Remote or Hybrid Employees
Your remote and hybrid employees are making a major effort to be productive and doing their best. Sometimes certain employees need a little nudge while some employees thrive more in a work-from-home setting. As we all get used to this new normal of working, it’s important to keep the communication lines open and focus on ensuring your employees have what they need to do their best in any environment they choose to work in, including additional support, more feedback or simply keeping track of their progress.