But much of the feeling that surrounds personal performance reviews has to do with the kind of conversation that you have in those meetings. It's the words, and intentions behind the words, that evoke the feelings.
So if, in place of embarrassment and frustration and feelings of failure and inadequacy, you instead want to evoke more curiosity and motivation and confidence, then try a few variations of these 5 powerful questions when you next review a staff member's performance:
Question 1: Are we meaningfully measuring the goals in your performance plan?
Do we have the right evidence or feedback to truly gauge where you are performing well and where you have potential and opportunity to perform even better?
Question 2: What are your personal performance measures telling you about your performance?
How do you interpret the feedback these measures offer? What conclusions can you draw about your performance strengths and further potential?
Question 3: In what ways, and how often, are you checking your progress toward your performance goals?
Are you monitoring these measures weekly or monthly so you have regular feedback you can act on? Do you have your own measures of performance, that keep you focused on the results most important for you to achieve?
Question 4: What opportunities are within your circle of influence (as opposed to your circle of control) that can help you move closer to your performance goals?
Forget about your constraints and think freely for a minute - what are some possible ways that you can develop your own potential and perform even better in your role, that you haven't considered before?
Question 5: What can I do to help you reach your current performance goals?
Think of yourself as a coach or mentor to your staff, and ask them for a range of ideas about how you can support them in striving for better personal performance.
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