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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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Employees who qualify as “disabled” under the ADA have the right to reasonable accommodations to allow them to perform the essential functions of their jobs. But choosing those accommodations requires an “interactive process” between employer and employee. Employers that rush to judgment about the alleged disability or the accommodation request will risk legal trouble.

You’re required to offer job accommodations to employees with qualifying disabilities. But if an employee has a medical condition that requires frequent bathroom breaks, does that count as a “disability”? The answer is a clear “yes," especially this year …

Here are four ways managers can make sure they really hear what their employees are saying. The payoff: fewer costly mistakes, less wasted time and better quality and service. Feel free to pass this article along to your supervisors.

Before you decide to throw out old evaluations and files, consider this: An employee may sue and refer back to those evaluations from memory. If she remembers nothing but positive performance reviews until a recent poor appraisal (engineered, she believes, to get her fired), you’ll need to be able to show her employment history wasn’t as rosy as she remembers.

Remind upper-level managers: When a supervisor or mid-level manager makes comments that could be construed as racist or religiously motivated, it pays to act fast. In fact, firing the responsible manager sometimes can be the best way to go. That way, if the employee he disparaged later gets turned down for a promotion or a raise, it will be much harder for an attorney to show a connection between the supervisor’s biased views and the denied opportunity ...

Move over, Google. Microsoft grabs tech headlines this month by adding zippy new features to its Internet Explorer browser. Here are four cool tricks that will save time for you and your employees.

Question: “I recently received a performance review from a new manager. I don’t agree with the results and received minimal feedback on my performance. I refused to sign the performance review, and I wrote my comments as to why. If called by the division head or HR to explain my comments, how should I respond?” — Anonymous

Sure, at one time or another, we’ve all worked for some great bosses and some bad bosses. But nothing can be more debilitating than working for someone who is ignorant of the laws. In the following case, a company president walked right into an FMLA lawsuit because he had never even heard of the Family and Medical Leave Act. He knows about it now ...

Here’s a good way to avoid litigation: Warn all your supervisors and managers that bad-mouthing an employee’s military service can spell trouble. That’s because any disciplinary action following such talk could be viewed as evidence military service was a factor in the decision.

Q. We have an employee who does not work very hard, and her productivity is only mediocre. If we terminate her, will she be able to collect unemployment compensation?

According to the EEOC, Pittsburgh-based Lifecare Hospital showed a remarkable lack of compassion when it fired business manager Diana Altieri-Hand, who had cancer at the time. Saner heads prevailed once hospital officials contemplated the prospect of a hospital justifying to a jury why it mistreated a cancer patient.

Ohio employees who are discharged for just cause aren’t entitled to unemployment compensation payments. But Ohio courts frequently hesitate to cut off unemployment benefits for one-time conduct that may be outrageous—as long as the employee doesn’t have a history of past disciplinary problems and the employer has a progressive discipline program it didn’t use.

Q. Our state agency’s board is considering terminating a legal secretary who seems to have been a supporter of one of our attorneys who was discharged for both performance problems and being disloyal to our board. We understand that, under the patronage dismissal doctrine, we can terminate employees who supported the political opponent of our agency’s elective head. Can the board likewise discharge the legal secretary for her seeming disloyalty?

Since employees get attorneys’ fees when a court determines employers violated their rights, it seems reasonable that employers should get attorneys’ fees when they have to waste time and money on frivolous litigation. It turns out some courts are beginning to entertain such requests.

Q. After repeatedly warning an employee about her poor performance, we recently terminated her. At the termination meeting, she complained for the first time that she felt she’d been held to higher standards based on her gender. She has now filed for unemployment benefits. While we don’t think she’s entitled to the benefits, we wonder whether it makes sense to fight her claim. What do you think?

You may have noticed more people than usual lurking outside your executive’s door. That’s because economic fears are prompting more employees to eavesdrop and gossip about what might happen next at their workplaces...

If you develop a reasonable retention policy and follow through by regularly deleting information you don’t need, chances are an employee later won’t be able to say you intentionally interfered with the ability to present a legal case ...

If you’ve ever been caught up in an employment lawsuit, chances are you couldn’t wait for it to be over. Yet every case presents a valuable opportunity to prevent future problems and improve HR effectiveness by conducting an “autopsy” of the claim.

Want to know how to get under the skin of the lawyers who represent employees? Ask one. They won't all cop to what sinks their cases, but this one did. Learn what she fears most when staring down an employer in court.

Meetings can be brutally boring. They can be too frequent, too long and too unproductive. You may think you can’t do anything to make a meeting more efficient and results-oriented—you aren’t the person leading it, right? But Amy Henderson, Henderson Training Inc., believes you can do a lot to influence a meeting.

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