HR directors in today’s organizations have likely experienced the dysfunction of the “once and done” performance appraisal or performance review process. Old school methods are now rapidly being replaced with an ongoing and more real-time stream of communication and continuous feedback.

This newer more agile approach to performance management can take the form of weekly team check-ins, quarterly one-on-one check-ins, and multi-rater feedback, which recasts the annual performance review to be developmentally-focused, not
performance or compensation-focused.

Shifting from a Performance-Based to a Development-Focused Review

Because feedback is delivered continuously under this new approach to performance management, the previous annual
performance review process can now shift to a capabilities and skills development process of the individual and the team. Since less time is required to review the past, the dialogue between manager and employee becomes more forward-thinking, future-focused, and career development-based.

The Critical Importance of One-on-One Check-ins

Research from Bersin by Deloitte clearly indicates organizations that review and revise goals more frequently outperform those that don’t.

The Undisputable Advantages of Continuous Feedback vs. The Outdated Annual Performance Review 1

Part of this process is developing leaders and team members who understand how to have meaningful and constructive one-on-one conversations, with the objective of improving individual and team performance. Today’s leaders must develop the attitude that it is their responsibility to develop their team by providing objective feedback, asking probing questions, and building a supportive and transparent working relationship with each team member.

The purpose of weekly team check-ins is to be proactive in identifying changes in plans and incorporating the latest information into the execution of plans. The weekly check-in also creates a form of mutual accountability for staying focused on what’s important and catching problem areas early. The weekly check-in is not to be confused with the outdated and irrelevant “status update” meeting, but rather depends on each team member thinking through what are the most important things to get done in the upcoming week.