Appraisals are as much important to organisations as they are to employees. On one hand, they work as morale boosters for employees, while on the other, they enable businesses to retain their movers and shakers by way of pay raises and profile upgrades. It's not an easy task for HR heads to promote someone because giving an appraisal to an inappropriate employee may harm the reputation of the entire organisation.
Since there are a lot of articles and papers available online that talk about the technical aspect of performance appraisal and how organisations prepare the best employee review system, this won’t be addressed here. Rather, we focus on how HR heads and managers need to judge whether any employee is worth the appraisal or not, individually.
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Let's put numbers up front
In the end, every employee is judged based on the revenue they have generated for the organisation in the past year by way of acquiring new clients, closing new business deals, bringing new projects on board or doing a lot more than the minimum target (for those who are in operations). If 'X' is what you're paying him in the form of salary, incentives, and bonuses, then what is his contribution towards the organisation? 2X, 3X, 4X or maybe more?
Analyse your employee's performance in terms of numbers before moving any further.
If a leadership role is up for grabs in the organisation, then assess your employees based on the initiatives they took throughout the year. You can analyse their leadership quality based on how well they mentored new employees and how fast (if at all) they volunteered for new projects. There's nothing wrong in taking inputs about their mentorship skills from newly hired employees.
How well they interact with other team members
You wouldn't want to have an unfriendly boss in your organisation. So before taking the final call, make sure you check whether he fraternises with rest of the team members or not. If it's a multi-team handling role, then take inputs from other teams as well.
Their way of dealing with stressful situations
Monthly targets, last minute inputs from clients, customer roll backs, revenue pressure and a hell lot of other stressful situations keep making their ways into the routine lives of business leaders. You need someone who can cope with such situations in a calm and composed manner and still manage to achieve their targets every time. If any of your employees has a proven track record in this regard, prefer his name for promotion over others.
You want a professional, not a funky boss
Those who start preparing for Friday evening from Wednesday will have a tough time handling a team in the long run. A boss should be someone who can be a role model for others. They should dress well, talk well and have a sense of responsibility. Assess your employees based on how they carry themselves in the organisation before making a call.
Apart from these parameters, you'd also like to check their overall track record over the past year. Check whether they engaged in any verbal (or physical) fight with co-workers, misbehaved with any female employee or abused any customer.
If any employee comes clean out of all these assessments, then he's worth the appraisal. You can decide the rest based on the number of appraisals due at the given point and any other parameter that's not part of this list.