Being in a position of responsibility, and having employees following your lead, means that you really need to be on your game, and holding yourself to a higher standard so you are positioned to get the very best from your team. This includes asking the all important questions when needed. But what are the questions every leader should be asking when conducting performance reviews?
Regular performance reviews are a useful tool in business, not only for identifying weaknesses and ensuring projects are on track, but also as a motivational tool, a chance to target learning, and to build trust with transparency at every level; but they’re not always used correctly – in fact, an eye-watering 9 in 10 managers are dissatisfied with how their organisations conduct performance reviews.
When you’re doing a self-review (also known as a self-audit), you can look honestly at your strengths and weaknesses, where you need to improve, what is working with the team you have, and how you can improve your processes to reach business goals, personal development aims, and career planning.
When you’re putting together a self-review, there’s a few key questions that you need to ask yourself, and answer honestly. So what are the questions every leader should be asking themselves on review?
What am I Currently Doing? Is it Working?
This is a bit of a general question and can be surprisingly difficult to answer – but you need to put some effort into answering, because it’s going to form the backbone of your strategic process. Think carefully about what your team is currently working on, how they’re working – and how you’re engaging with them. What has been coming up frequently in terms of questions or problems? How are the various processes handled? Be honest in your review – you might find it easier to assign a number value from 1-5 or 1-10 (1 being poor and 10 being excellent) and split out the different elements of your job and rate them all. Anything 5 or under should be the focus for improvement.
What Can Be Improved?
Once you’ve got your ratings, and can see which areas aren’t doing as well, you can start to look at the ‘what’ and ‘why’.
What has gone wrong? Why has this occurred? What can fix this?
Is My Communication Effective?
Communication is vitally important for leaders, you need your team to know exactly what you want to say, and understand what you want them to do.You need to think carefully about what you have been asking your team and how it’s been communicated – if there’s a disconnect between what you’re asking, and what you’re saying, then you need to work on removing this – your team need to be confident that when you say you want them to do something, that it is actually what you’re asking for.