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Holding successful mid–year and end–of–year performance appraisal discussions requires preparation. For example, developing a comprehensive written appraisal narrative can be extremely helpful when preparing for the face–to–face appraisal review. Appraising officials can use the following checklist as a tool to help them prepare for employee appraisal reviews.
Have all the necessary tools close at hand before starting to write the appraisal narrative, including:
Become familiar with the appraisal form and review how to derive the summary rating (e.g., numerical formula, percentages, and numerical weights). Take the time to review the employee's elements and standards, knowing which elements are critical, non-critical, and additional, and how to measure employee performance. Finally, review all the documentation. When writing the narrative, consider these points:
Responsibilities and Duties. Review employee responsibilities:
Performance. Include performance data for the entire appraisal period, not just the most recent information. The appraisal narrative should address:
Review Developmental Needs. In addition to the information in the narrative, prepare to talk to the employee about developmental needs. Identify skills and competencies that may enhance or improve the employee's performance. Look into a variety of ways of improving skills, such as classroom or on-line training, professional conferences and workshops, details to other work units or to positions with higher responsibilities, or on-the-job training. Enter the appraisal review with this information on hand, but during the review, be sure to ask the employee for input on development needs. If employees participate in creating their own development plans, those plans likely will be more successful.
The final preparation step is to set aside a time and a place to meet with the employee. When scheduling the appraisal interview, make sure to:
When the supervisor takes time to prepare, conducting the appraisal interview can be less complicated, less stressful, and more successful at providing the employee valuable feedback on performance.