Performance Reviews

For most managers, conducting effective performance reviews is the most daunting part of their job. Don’t look on it with dread! Make your performance appraisals work for you, not against you with these tools: performance review examples, tips on writing employee reviews, sample performance reviews and employee evaluation forms.
So, your tasked with assessing employee performance and writing performance reviews. Where do you get started?

See more scripts and strategies for writing performance reviews and conducting valuable employee appraisals. Get a sample performance review and employee evaluation forms when you sign up for our Free email newsletter for Leaders & Managers like you…

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If your promotion processes are haphazard—devoid of objective criteria and without a clear system for choosing candidates—you could wind up facing a disparate-impact discrimination lawsuit. That’s one powerful reason to institute a clear promotion policy that includes posting job openings, creating application processes and relying primarily on objective selection criteria.

Listen up! Breaking news! It doesn’t really matter whom you label as a supervisor any more. As a way to hold a company liable for sexually harassing conduct by a “supervisor,” one court recently relabeled a co-worker as a “supervisor,” even though this person had absolutely no power to hire, fire, promote, demote or otherwise affect the harassed employee’s job status. The court, with the support of the EEOC, ruled that just being the “highest ranking employee on site” with the ability to set schedules and dole out discipline makes for a supervisor as a matter of law.

Anything less than a completely honest performance appraisal will only cheat the employee out of personal development, plus it could set the stage for a discrimination lawsuit. Here are eight important do’s and don’ts.

Here’s another good reason to meticulously track performance: If you end up firing or demoting someone without good documentation, you may end up in court. Bad timing alone could trigger a lawsuit if the employee engaged in some sort of protected activity just before the action.

Whether it's deserved or not, the perception that management is "against" employees, once earned, is difficult to shake. That's why it's so important for supervisors and HR to treat all employees fairly and consistently at all times, especially when it comes to discipline. These five questions can help managers gauge whether their discipline is fair. BONUS: 7 tips for documenting your disciplinary process.

If an employer has to downsize due to economic conditions, employees who are out on FMLA leave aren’t immune. They can be included in the reduction in force as long as their FMLA status isn’t used as a factor. But employers have to be careful—it will look suspicious if the only employee laid off happens to have been out on FMLA leave or just returned from it.

Employers are often too eager to settle cases just to get out from under the possibility of a runaway jury. But caving in like that can make you a more tempting target for other employees. If you and your attorneys are convinced you didn’t do anything wrong, it may be best to trust a jury to hear the case and come to the same conclusion.

Virtually every federal employment law has an anti-retaliation provision—they would be toothless tigers without them. Employees who can’t prove outright discrimination often try the retaliation route. The EEOC handled a record-high 33,613 retaliation complaints in 2009. As a result, employers must tread carefully when dealing with an employee who has exercised his or her rights under any federal law.

After two years of painful payroll reductions, there’s enough light at the end of the recessionary tunnel for some employers to begin considering pay raises. But in a volatile economy, implementing performance incentives and bonus plans is easier said than done. Experts say two tactics can help HR pros create variable pay plans that strike a balance between risk, reward and fiscal stability.

Q. Do we have to conduct regular performance appraisals and give annual increases? We told a new hire that we would, but now don’t have time or money to do so.

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