Why Most Employee Evaluations Suck

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Scenario: Manager Joanne tells Employee Sammy that he needs to improve here _______, here _______, and here _______. Next month, she does the same thing. Next year, she does the same thing. And it won't stop, ever. Yes, it's awesome Joanne's trying to improve her organization by recognizing her employee's weaknesses. Doing it is necessary if you're evaluating an employee in a certain position. But, it doesn't go far enough.

Why Most Employee Evaluations Suck

What Joanne doesn't know is that she probably needs an evaluation herself. As the typical manager, she sucks. Most employee evaluations focus on repairing a person's weaknesses. With good hearts, managers make fruitless attempts to transform weaknesses into all-world strengths. Converting a weakness into a strength rarely -- if ever -- happens, and therefore, managers produce mediocre results from their employees. What do you do instead?
  • Recognize weaknesses. But, focus on their strengths.

    20-year old Michael Jordan is sucking at baseball. You're his father, personal manager and decision-maker. You tell him he sucks at baseball, but you don't tell him how to improve. Instead, you know his world-class talents lie in basketball -- so you steer him toward that path.

My Employees = Michael Jordans?

Everybody has inner-Michael-Jordan-talents hidden inside of them. Your job as a manager is to not only recognize weaknesses, but steer employees away from those weaknesses, and tap those strengths that will benefit your company -- and the employee. We'll leave you with the following point:
  • Recognize that everything is your fault if something goes wrong.

    If an employee is under-performing at a position, know that it's your fault. You either:
    1. didn't provide the necessary resources
    2. didn't provide enough training and guidance,
    3. probably placed the employee in the wrong position, or
    4. incorrectly hired/kept-on somebody who can't benefit the company.
As a manager, you're in control of everything. Once you become accountable to everything that affects you and the company, you'll be that much closer to becoming a kick-ass manager who makes freakishly wise decisions. Here's a template to get your started:

"Sammy, you really suck at your assembly job, dawg. So, I won't let you suffer doing that. Since I know you're a ridiculously fabulous communicator, I'll put you on the front lines as a customer rep. I have a good feeling you'll kick ass."


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Posted on September 06


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