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How to Take the Stress Out of Giving a Performance Review


Here is another valuable Management Tip of the Day from Harvard Business Review. To sign up for a free subscription to any/all HBR newsletters, please click here.

Which is worse: receiving a performance review, or giving one? At least with the latter you have some control. When you’re the one conducting the review, try doing these three things to make it a productive experience.

1. Set expectations early. Make employee-evaluation practices clear at the beginning of the year with individual performance planning sessions.

2. Set the right tone. Everyone hates the “feedback sandwich”: compliments, criticism, then more niceties. Deliver a positive message to your good performers by mainly concentrating on their strengths and achievements. Confront poor performers and demand improvement.

3. Avoid money talk. If possible, don’t mention compensation during the review; but if you must, divulge the salary information at the start of the conversation.

Today’s Management Tip was adapted from “Delivering an Effective Performance Review” by Rebecca Knight.

To read that article and join the discussion, please click here.

Also, you may wish to check out the new book, Management Tips from Harvard Business Review, by clicking here.

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