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Three Ways to Lighten up the Performance Management Process

How to develop a more streamlined, effective performance management process

How many times has your performance management process left you feeling confused and annoyed, rather than motivated?  

If you’re like me, the answer is too many. Fortunately, there is a better way. At my company, we have gone through all of the typical iterations on our way to what we believe is the right approach. We’re a marketing tech startup, and for us an annual review process was absurd because the product and our roles will change dramatically in a year. Writing substantial quarterly reviews for a large team is better, but is still a huge time investment that is hard to justify when what really matters is improving performance for tomorrow, not agonizing over whether we did a good job yesterday.

Things clicked into place when we transitioned to eight forward-facing, light-touch conversations per year. Suddenly, reviews only took ten minutes per person but they prompted the right conversations. Our employees felt like they were finally getting regular feedback and knew how they were doing. And the consistent nature of these conversations also helped eliminate the fear and stressful anticipation many associate with traditional “performance reviews.”

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