Virtually every company, regardless of size, has an annual staff review. During this review, employees are carefully gauged on their contributions throughout the year.
It’s a valuable tool for employers to see who’s moving forward and who’s lagging behind. It’s also valuable for staff to see how their work is perceived and how they can improve.
If you’re a team leader, department manager or even the head honcho, what would your review look like?
Some of the most recognized and top-performing companies in the world don’t just hold staff reviews. They also have management reviews where the staff has their turn to share their thoughts on their manager’s leadership abilities.
It’s an extremely beneficial process for managers and team leaders. Why?
Because sometimes we think our subordinates see us one way, while the reality may be something different.
What you want to project and how you come across can be two very different things. A manager review allows you to gain insight into how effective your leadership skills are perceived.
If your organization does not already have a manager review process in place, I suggest you create one. It can be an anonymous review or not, depending on your comfort level and the one comfort level of your subordinates.
“But what if I get bad reviews?” or “That will just give employees a chance to complain about policies or things beyond my control,” you might be thinking.
Guess what? That means you have an opportunity to turn things around!
Yes, you may get a few disgruntled employees who give unfair reviews. However, you might learn a few things that you can change and improve your leadership skills and boost your team’s productivity.
Maybe you can’t change the vacation policy, but knowing what your staff is unhappy about can at least provide some insight into the future.
While you will want to include an opportunity for unguided feedback on your manager review form, you’ll likely learn more specific things by asking a few questions to get things rolling.
Your tone, style and delivery speak volumes about you as a leader. Knowing how to effectively communicate is vital to the success of all relationships in your life, even in your personal ones.
What is your communication style? Are you active, logical, a connector or a thinker?
Volumes of research show how different people’s communication styles can clash. A disconnect and breakdown in communication can effectively send the wrong message.
It can, in the worst case, result in an unhappy employee, or a project not getting done. Make sure the way you communicate with your team is effective, and isn’t being interpreted the wrong way.
This question gives you valuable insight on where and how your employees will excel. If they love creating advertisements or copy for company-wide publications, then perhaps they should be given more marketing-oriented jobs.
If they like working on long, detailed projects with little interaction, then perhaps they’re best suited for recurring tasks that don’t require a lot of outside input. By posing this question, you can gain a better understanding of where their strengths and weaknesses lie.
Ask this question without fear and don’t be personally offended by the results. Hearing criticism about ourselves can be one of the hardest and most difficult things in life.
But if taken the right way, it can also be the most instrumental tool for allowing ourselves to perform better. Ask for critical feedback, without penalty, and use it to your advantage.
If you ask your team for their honest opinion. Then demonstrate you are taking their feedback and suggestions to heart. By doing so, you’ll be that much closer to building a stronger and more loyal team.
Above all else, make sure your team members know that you’re listening. Give them the chance to provide their feedback.
By paying attention to the results, you’ll demonstrate that you genuinely care about their roles at your company, which is a true indication of an exceptional leader.
In my book WINology – World-Class Performance, I dig deep into the secrets of “constant and never ending improvement” every world-class leader must embrace. I call it The Winner’s Way: Start your WINology journey today.
What steps have you taken to make sure you measure up as a leader? Let us know in the comments section below!