(From NBC Chicago) -- Although many companies in corners of the world are doing away with requiring résumés for applicants, something that's unlikely to ever go the way of the dodo are employee evaluations. There's a necessary means to keep each other in check and communicate both areas of praise and things employees should work on. But they can also be conversations that harm or improve the relationship between an employee and their manager.
"Performance management is the very heart of talent management," said Connie Costigan, the director of marketing communications at Halogen Software. "Without evaluations a company is going to be lacking critical insight when it comes to other processes like succession planning, development, goal alignment and even pay for performance."
In my career I've been in evaluations I knew weren't run quite the way they should have, and also temped at places many moons ago where I overheard evals going on -- in cubicles, over the phone, with a manager in another time zone, no less -- that made me shake my head. Understandably, evals are a tough thing to do right. Or are they?
"Nothing said during the review should come as a surprise," added Costigan.
So, to prevent that, a good management approach would be to communicate with employees on an ongoing basis to eliminate the illusion of there being a crystal tower you descend from whenever you deign to rub elbows with your workforce. That's a surefire way to alienate your workers, and also it can telegraph bad news is coming whenever you approach employees to discuss anything with them. That's bad for morale.
Assuming you have ongoing communication throughout the year and you're in the conference room with the door closed, where do you go from there?