Stop Telling Your General Feedback!

Performance evaluations come once or twice a year—and when they come, they are often a joke or not worth anyone’s time. Your employees dread them and get all of their yearly criteria together, while you are trying to mentally prepare yourself for them to critique your coaching and leadership abilities.

Both people sweat.

We worry about the unstated known and fear the potential factors called change and performance improvement.

Employees will run through questions like, “Will this evaluation really help my performance?” “Am I going to be motivated at all to work after this shaming?” “Do I get to speak up about my opinions and really show my point of view on my own work ethic?”

As the manager, it’s time to be ready to take these questions on and fully deliver feedback dripping with truth and wrapped in reality.

We want to give you some pocket advice to make sure your performance evaluations ACTUALLY do something good:

Shred your general feedback! Get rid of it!

Have your specific feedback ready. Most people work at a moderate level—they get their work done and then go home. Wash, rinse, repeat—every day. But, you want a team that thrives in your working environment, one that doesn’t just exist with little purpose.

People need specific feedback on what their strengths and weakness are. The delivery will be different for every person, but people need to hear where they can, and should, improve. It may be easier to mull over a performance review, but don’t you want a team that constantly improves their abilities and talent? People development should be a main priority as a manager.

Make yourself a list of talking points and questions for them. Be aware of who you are talking to and how they will take their criticism and coaching. Aim to encourage, and never forget that your team is counting on your leadership skills to bring them to a high level of success.

Be specific and truthful will help the individual, the leader, and the team to come together and achieve profound goals.


Denis Coleman

Denis Coleman is the founder and CEO of Work Compass, a cloud staff performance collaboration software platform that helps teams align their efforts with strategic goals and continuously improve performance. Frustrated with the disconnect between strategy setting and day to day execution and the lack of tools available to managers to help them be great at their most important function …. Aligning their teams activities with strategic goals and actively managing for high performance Denis spent over 5 years researching strategy execution and performance management practices before founding Work Compass to create a software solution. Denis has held senior roles in Ireland, Czech Republic and North America with high performing electronics manufacturing and professional services organisations for more than 12 years. Denis has worked as Finance Director responsible for €800 million in annual revenues for Flextronics International, Key Account Manager responsible for annual revenues of more than €600 million for Dovatron International and Management Consultant for BDO one of Europe’s most successful professional services providers.

Follow us

Get the newsletter