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Authors: Monci J Williams
Published by: Harvard Business Publishing
Published in: "Harvard Management Update", 1997

Abstract

Rather than the one-time, one-way report card of traditional performance appraisal, performance management is a two-way, continuous process of observation, conversation, thinking, planning, and coaching that occurs throughout the year. A nine-point plan is provided on how to have better conversations with employees, suggesting an empowering, rather than a merely evaluative, end in mind. Highlights include the importance of continuous feedback--schedule three or four performance- related conversations with each employee per year, allowing the employee the opportunity to adjust behavior as he or she goes along. Criticism should be leavened with positive feedback, since people handle criticism best when it is delivered in a ratio of one to three--one criticism for every three compliments. Companies achieve results not by poring over numbers, but by poring over the people who do the things that make the numbers what they are.

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Abstract

Rather than the one-time, one-way report card of traditional performance appraisal, performance management is a two-way, continuous process of observation, conversation, thinking, planning, and coaching that occurs throughout the year. A nine-point plan is provided on how to have better conversations with employees, suggesting an empowering, rather than a merely evaluative, end in mind. Highlights include the importance of continuous feedback--schedule three or four performance- related conversations with each employee per year, allowing the employee the opportunity to adjust behavior as he or she goes along. Criticism should be leavened with positive feedback, since people handle criticism best when it is delivered in a ratio of one to three--one criticism for every three compliments. Companies achieve results not by poring over numbers, but by poring over the people who do the things that make the numbers what they are.

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