The Appraisal Interview

Appraisal interview

An interview in which the supervisor and subordinate review the appraisal and make plans to remedy deficiencies and reinforce strengths

An appraisal typically culminates in an appraisal interview. Here, supervisor and subordinate review the appraisal and make plans to remedy deficiencies and reinforce strengths. Interviews like these are often uncomfortable. Few people like to receive – or give – negative feedback. Adequate preparation and effective implementation are therefore essential.

Types of Appraisal Interviews

There are four basic types of appraisal interviews each with its own objective:

Satisfactory – Promotable is the easiest interview: The person’s performance is satisfactory and there is a promotion ahead. Our objective is to discuss the person’s career plans and to develop a specific action plan for the educational and professional development the person needs to move up.

Satisfactory — Not promotable is for employees whose performance is satisfactory but for whom promotion is not possible. Perhaps there is no more room in the company. Perhaps he or she is happy as is and doesn’t want a promotion. The objective here is to maintain satisfactory performance. The best option is usually to find incentives that are important to the person and enough to maintain satisfactory performance. These might include extra time off, a small bonus, additional authority to handle a slightly enlarged job, and reinforcements perhaps in the form of an occasional well done!

When the person’s performance is unsatisfactory but correctable the interview objective is to lay out and plan for correcting the unsatisfactory performance.

If the employee is unsatisfactory and the situation is uncorrectable you can usually skip the interview. You either tolerate the person’s poor performance for now, or dismiss the person.

How to conduct the appraisal interview

Preparation is essential. Review the person’s job description, compare performance to the standards and review the employee’s previous appraisals. Give the employee at least a week’s notice to review his or her work, analyze problems, and gather questions and comments.

Find a mutually agreeable tem for the interview and allow enough time for the entire interview. Interviews with lower level personnel like clerical workers and maintenance staff should take no more than an hour. Interviews with management employees often two or three hours Be sure the interview is done in a private place where you won’t be interrupted.

Guidelines: There are four things to keep mind when actually conducting the interviews:

1) Talk in terms of objective work data: Use examples such as absences, tardiness, quality records, orders processed, productivity records, order processing time, accident reports, and so on.
2) Don’t get personal: Don’t say, you’re too slow in producing those reports. Instead try to compare the person’s performance to a standard (These reports should normally be done within 10 days). Similarly, don’t compare the person’s performance that of other people. (He s is quicker than you are).
3) Encourage the person to talk: Stop and listen to what the person is saying; ask open ended questions such as What do you think we can do to improve the situation? Use a command such as Go on restate the person’s last point as a question such as, you don’t think you can get the job done?
4) Don’t tiptoe around: Don’t get personal, but do make sure the person leaves knowing specifically what he or she is doing right and doing wrong. Make sure before he or she leaves there is agreement on how things will be improved and by when. Write up an action plan with targets and dates.