The key to useful staff reviews is not to make it entirely target oriented but to focus on how staff are meeting those targets.
As an example, company objectives should be defined and tightly linked to the vision, mission, and values of the company. They determine the objectives of each staff member, from the production line and admin staff, through to strategists and even the CEO.
The company values also define other personal goals and evaluation (on issues such as ethics, client-centricity, change, effectiveness, teamwork, and initiative).
It’s not just “what” – it’s also “how”
However, success isn’t determined solely by whether everyone hits their objectives. It’s about striking the right balance between performance and growth culture.
Meeting goals accounts for 55% of someone’s final evaluation. However, the company allocates remaining 45% to how they went about it.
So, for instance, a ruthless achiever who doesn’t care about their colleagues does poorly within the company. Goals sometimes relate to personal performance and completing specific business activities, but they can also extend more widely and adapt over time.
For example; staff members ‘own’ objectives can serve as a reference point for a period; many goals feed into agendas and meetings, so they are continuously discussed; management and staff may split objectives into two, drop them, or add new ones as priorities change.
Trust your employees
In my experience, it’s about trusting employees: this is the approach that delivers results. It’s not without pain: some employees might leave because of the way they attempt to achieve objectives clashes with the culture of the company.
However, the model fosters a culture where each staff member is considered a mature professional, who owns their role and can use their initiative.
The key takeaway here is to analyse not whether you should or shouldn’t be implementing staff reviews but whether you are applying them correctly.
Your business must have a good income, but that income should also be sustainable. Company culture is at stake when you focus only on what’s being achieved rather than how your staff are delivering it.
Creating a toxic company culture takes its toll in the long term which risks repelling talent, losing good team members and most importantly, profit.
So, the next time you look at the figures and the people in your company, ask yourself – should I be creating a company a performance-based culture or a growth-based one?
Stefano Maifreni is the founder of Eggeclerate, the business expansion experts.