Avoid These 5 Performance Review Mistakes to Develop a Stronger Team - Amber Hurdle | Globally Recognized Leadership & Personal Branding Expert

Avoid These 5 Performance Review Mistakes to Develop a Stronger Team

June 15, 2020

Employees crave feedback–especially those that are high-performers and desire to grow as a leader within the business. Performance reviews are a perfect opportunity to provide direct and constructive feedback to employees and develop a plan for their continued growth. 

If you’ve been working remotely over the past few months while physically distancing, performance reviews are a great time to provide feedback on the new workflow and to check in on employee performance. While productivity may be lower as employees both parent and work (and do so much more) during the work day, holding performance reviews provides the opportunity to celebrate the hard work they’ve done under these conditions while providing grace for any balls that may have been dropped during the transition. This is also an opportunity to clarify your expectations going forward if you plan to continue to work remotely.

Before you start scheduling those reviews make note of these 5 common performance review mistakes to avoid.

Mistake 1: Not taking time to prepare. 

Your review of direct reports can significantly impact their performance and career over time. Do not take this responsibility lightly! Taking time to thoughtfully prepare for your review is an investment you are making into the career of your direct report as well as the success of the team. Plan to spend a few hours or more preparing as you look back on their performance and growth, not just how they’ve performed in the last few weeks.

Mistake 2: Relying too much on peer feedback and not their results.

Incorporating peer feedback can be helpful during the performance review, but ultimately do not depend on peer review only. You should have a relationship with your report to know how they are excelling and where they have room for improvement. Relying on peer feedback can become focused on popularity and personality, rather than performance and results. Look to outcomes and deliverables in addition to contributions to the team.

Mistake 3: Not providing constructive and substantive feedback.

Your reports want your feedback. They want to know where they stand and how they are doing. Provide specific feedback on projects and their leadership within the organization. Providing constructive feedback, not just a generic pat on the back, can motivate your report to continue to perform at a high level or even to up their game.

Mistake 4: Not allowing the employee to ask questions during the review.

Effective performance reviews are conversational. They allow the direct report to learn and grow based on feedback, rather than feel defeated by failures or areas to improve. Allow ample time for the report to ask questions based on your feedback and to chat about ways to move to the next level in the organization. 

Mistake 5: Not creating a plan for follow up and growth.

It is the onus of the manager to communicate a follow up plan with the direct report. If you want to see changes based on the feedback, you must create and agree upon an action plan! Not only does this provide a plan to refer to at the next performance review, but it gives the direct report a roadmap for their growth. Remember, no plan means no action. Don’t let the time you spent planning for the review be wasted with your feedback going in one ear and out the other. 

Performance reviews provide an excellent avenue for providing constructive feedback to your team. Don’t waste the opportunity by making these mistakes!

Are there any tips you’d add to this list? Share them in the comments.

About Abby

Abby Siegel Hyman is the Marketing + PR Manager at Amber Hurdle Consulting, and holds a master’s in Theological Studies and Community Development and Action. She is the proud mom of the goldendoodle, Willie–one of the office dog cheerleaders that keeps AHC innovative and engaged. Connect with Abby on LinkedIn

Amber Hurdle Consulting is a multi-award-winning talent optimization firm that pioneers using both science and marketing principles to solve these problems by strengthening your brand from the inside out. As a Predictive Index (PI) Certified Partner, we teach you how to generate and use real data in the form of people analytics, and then we sit on your bench as analytics experts, bringing along almost 20 years of branding, marketing and public relations experience. With these tools, we partner with you to design a compelling internal relations strategy featuring three key areas:

#1 We work with your leaders on their personal brands, so they increase self awareness and see and harvest the greatness in others. 

#2 We teach you to use a scientific, repeatable method to recruit, retain and inspire top talent, elevating your culture while crafting a world-class employer brand. 

#3 We then help you leverage strong leaders and a “best places to work” environment so that happy employees are serving happy customers…ultimately elevating your business brand.


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