How to Handle Giving an Employee a Poor Performance Review
Having a positive employee review is easy. You applaud your employee’s accomplishments, discuss plans for the future, and (hopefully) give them a handsome raise.
Sadly, the same does not apply when you have to give a poor performance review to an employee whose efforts have been iffy at best.
Here’s how to handle a negative employee review so that both you and your employee both feel positive and motivated at the end of it.
1. Most likely, your employee already knows his work has not been up to par.
But there is a chance that your employee could have no idea that you’re not satisfied with their performance. That’s why it’s important for you to do your due diligence before the upcoming review.
Cite specific examples where your employee dropped the ball on a deadline or was disrespectful to you in front of your team. Having something to refer to while you are speaking to your employee will not only help support your review but also act as a refresher should your employee deny any of your claims.
A negative employee review can quickly become heated, with both you and your worker launching into defense mode. After all, no one wants to be told that their performance is poor, or worse, that they are not going to get a raise or bonus because of it. It’s up to you to keep things calm during the review.
2. After explaining why you’re disappointed in your employee’s work, give them time to talk.
It may be that they were going through a personal problem unbeknownst to you that adversely affected their work. Perhaps they were assigned a project that proved far too challenging for them, and as a result, their work suffered. Or, all they might be able to offer up are empty excuses.
Whatever the case, it’s important that your employee feels they’ve been heard, so make sure you take the time to actually listen to what they have to say.
After being told they haven’t been doing well at work and aren’t going to get a raise to boot, your employee will definitely feel deflated.
3. If you believe in your employee and feel this period of poor work was simply temporary, it’s up to you to end your employee review on a positive note.
Focus on a better future by explaining in detailed terms what you expect of them in the weeks and months to come. You should let them know if they do the work expected of them, they could get some workplace perks.
For example, you might allow them to work at home part-time or even help fund part of their education if they’re planning to go back to school. Offering incentives will help motivate your employee, keep them on track, and hopefully ensure a much better employee review down the road.