Nick Gallimore

Managing Director of People Management


How to say goodbye to Stone Age Performance Management


Nick Gallimore

Managing Director of People Management


Nick Gallimore

Managing Director of People Management

Are you tired of chasing up appraisal forms? Are you wondering why your people roll their eyes and sigh when it’s time for end of year reviews? Are you starting to wonder if your Performance Management process is the right fit for your organisation and your people? If so it might be time to bring your Performance Management into the 21st century! Remove the pain out of annual appraisals, and move to a more engaging, continuous process that will actually yield results.

We recently ran a webinar about what is so wrong with outdated performance management methods and how you can update and innovate how you handle reviews, goal setting, progress tracking and more.

So many people have had a negative appraisal experience during their time working, maybe there hasn’t been a record kept of the work they have put in and so their manager accuses them of not doing enough, despite a lot of hard work, or maybe their objectives from the previous year weren’t able to be met due to unforeseen circumstances (a global pandemic for example) so now, through no fault of their own, they are rated poorly.

This leads to frustration with their manager, their organisation, and in some cases can lead to people thinking ‘what’s the point in working hard if I’m underappreciated? Why strive to hit goals when my objectives become irrelevant after a month?’

So how do we combat these flaws and make performance management better for everybody involved? If the aim of a performance management process is to improve the performance of an organisation as a whole, the way to do this is actually well known and well documented, and can be achieved in the following ways.

Agile goal setting

Set and proactively work towards meaningful individual goals, which directly link to the organisation’s priorities. These should be short term goals, rather than annual. Doing this means an employee always knows what they are working towards, knows their current goals are relevant, and remain engaged with their work rather than getting burnt out on a yearlong set of objectives.


Real-time feedback

A mixture of positive and constructive feedback delivered in the moment. By getting feedback straight away an employee can apply that feedback to their work instantly, rather than months later when it may no longer be relevant. Furthermore, getting a piece of positive feedback makes and employee feel seen and appreciated. These pieces of feedback should be stored throughout the year and can then be used to accurately review employee performance when needed.

Regular coaching conversations

Regular, structured conversations that focus on progress against goals and removal of blockers to progress. Managers should be talking to their employees on a one to one basis regularly, to ensure they are comfortable with their work load and aren’t struggling in silence. If done right this can reduce burn out and lead to a happier and more productive workforce.

These actions are all part of a continuous Performance Management model, making goal setting, feedback and manager / employee conversations part of day to day work life, and not an overwhelming and stressful once a year task that gets forgotten about a few weeks later.

A once a year approach to Performance Management simply isn’t enough, it isn’t enough time to cover everything that needs to be discussed, it isn’t enough to set one set of goals a year when people, their roles and organisational priorities are so frequently changing and it isn’t enough to only check in on employees once a year to make sure they are happy and thriving in their role.

By making Performance Management a continuous part of working life you are giving your employees the best possible chance to maximise their productivity, and a more productive work force can only be a good thing for everybody within an organisation.

To find out more on this subject and listen to an open discussion between Nick Gallimore and guest speakers Jordan Cooper (Talent Brand and Enablement Manager at Advanced) and Lucy Jarman (HR Manager at JN Bentley), you can watch the full webinar on demand here, or take a look at Advanced’s Continuous Performance Management software, Clear Review.