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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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Every manager loves an employee who gives extra effort—the type who will come in early or stay late to finish a project. But, as this new case shows, managers should be careful about praising hourly employees for their off-the-clock efforts. Workers can use those comments in an overtime-pay lawsuit as proof that the company not only knew of the extra hours, but also condoned them.

Providing negative feedback during employee performance reviews is an uncomfortable but necessary part of being a successful manager. Surveys show that employees actually value negative feedback when it’s delivered constructively. But a poor approach can cause resentment and further job disengagement. Follow these tips when giving your next review.
Employees who have just lost their jobs usually leave their termination meetings in a foul mood. So, don’t give them any reason during that meeting to send them marching to a lawyer’s office. As you’ll see in the following case, one inflammatory phrase from a supervisor can spark a lawsuit.

“I’m worried the team won’t like my suggestions.” “I’m worried I didn’t give my boss enough time between flights.” “I’m worried they’ll eliminate my position.” Everybody worries sometimes, but too much worrying becomes a mental bad habit that costs time, money and personal sanity. What to do instead? Make worry WORK for you.

Nonexempt employees are entitled to be paid for all the hours they work. Before issuing a performance appraisal that hails hourly employees for coming in early and staying late, make sure they were appropriately compensated. Otherwise, your praise may come back to haunt you.

An employee’s request to take FMLA leave can be frustrating for supervisors who have to manage schedules and projects. But if bosses voice those concerns in a way that seems angry or annoyed, they may be creating the perfect storm for an FMLA interference lawsuit.

Some employers try to avoid the impression of retaliation by making sure that whoever makes disciplinary decisions doesn’t know about any discrimination complaints. That way, they can argue that if the decision-maker wasn’t privy to the complaint, he couldn’t be retaliating. It isn’t quite that simple.

Common sense says that if a manager hires someone knowing that she belongs to a protected class, the manager probably won’t turn around a few months later and fire the new employee because she belongs to that protected class. That’s why you should make it a policy that the same managers who make hiring decisions also make termination decisions.

An employee’s request to take FMLA leave can be frustrating for supervisors who have to manage schedules and projects. But if they voice those concerns in a way that seems angry or annoyed, they may be creating the perfect storm for an FMLA interference lawsuit. Remind them to accept FMLA requests professionally, without emotion.

How many times have you used an employee’s performance review to find out how your performance is? Dan Rosensweig, CEO of Chegg, starts the conversation with the employee this way:

Question: My boss has promoted me, and I now manage five people. He wants me to do performance evaluations, but I have no idea what these employees’ salaries are. He feels that I don’t need to get involved in the “money” side of things. How can I establish my authority if I’m not given sufficient information to manage these people?
The Federal Jury Act makes it clear that employers may not “discharge, threaten to discharge, intimidate, or coerce any permanent employee by reason of such employee’s jury service, or the attendance or scheduled attendance in connection with such service, in any court of the United States.” Two recent cases show that courts won’t turn a blind eye to employers that fire workers because of jury service.
You’ve had it up to here. Now it’s time to fire a poor performing employee. As you’re about to do so, the employee wants to tell you something. But you tell her to “zip it.” Nothing she says will change your mind. As this case shows, you better zip it yourself and listen. Here’s why …
Bonuses are back, according to research conducted by the Hay Group. But with a pragmatic nod to today’s austere business environment, employers are taking a hard look at why they’re dishing out variable pay, what they want it to accomplish and how they decide who gets how much.
Most organizations believe they do pay for performance. They don’t. Here's how to get real about a compensation system that truly pays employees according to what they contribute to organizational success.
Question: “On her performance review, my sister 'Jenna' was rated 'below expectations' because her boss said she took too long to complete a major project. However, this really wasn’t her fault ... I don’t think this is fair, because many things are beyond her control and she gets little cooperation from others. What do you think?”

Ever since his article in The Wall Street Journal two years ago drew an outsize response, Samuel Culbert has been calling job performance reviews “baloney.” The UCLA business professor doesn’t stop there. “First,” he says, “they’re dishonest and fraudulent. And second, they’re just plain bad management.”

It’s a misconception that anytime a supervisor has a romantic relationship with an employee, other employees can sue for sex discrimination. If that were the case, employers could be held liable for any number of legitimate (or unsavory) relationships between employees or even with outsiders.

A survey of 500 HR professionals asked how often their organizations conduct formal performance appraisals of employees. The old-reliable yearly performance appraisal is still the standard. Find out other time frames that work for some organizations. Plus, tips for employees on how to get the greatest value from performance reviews.
A former Hernando County public works director has filed an EEOC complaint alleging that his discharge in January was part of a county plan to get rid of older, highly paid employees. Charles Mixson, who is 61 years old, claims that the county wants to terminate all managers over age 55.
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