Performance appraisal discussion format

See the example below to help you structure the performance appraisal discussion with your employee. When preparing for the meeting, check that you have:

  1. Chosen a convenient and appropriate setting to hold the meeting.
  2. Picked a time when both of us can focus on the discussion without interruption.
  3. Considered the configuration of the room to make sure there are no physical barriers between us.
  4. Shared the purpose of the meeting ahead of time with the employee.
  5. Determined the agenda we will follow.
  6. Forwarded the office phone to voicemail, turned cell phone off and not simply to vibrate, closed Outlook to stop e-mail notifications.
  7. Made other people aware that I am not to be distracted.
  8. Spent enough time planning how I would like the meeting to go.

Possible performance appraisal discussion format

Introduction (2 minutes)

  • Put the employee at ease.
  • Set the stage by explaining the purpose is to have a meaningful discussion as well as to plan for the future.
  • Ask if the employee has had a chance to review the document if you prepared the document.

Note: If the staff member has not had time to review then we would highly recommend you reschedule the meeting.

Staff member view point (10 minutes)

  • Ask for the employee’s perspective of their performance and the evaluation.
  • Ask how the employee views their job and the working climate they perform their job in.
  • Ask if the employee has any issues/ problems that they wish to discuss with you.
  • Ask if the employee has ideas about how the job could be improved.

Supervisor/manager view point (5 minutes)

  • Provide a summary of performance and not the detail as it is already included in the document.
  • Avoid comparison to other staff and focus all comments against the expectation of the job and how they met or didn’t meet the needs of the job.

Note: You may wish to focus on what to keep doing, what to stop doing, what to start doing.

Goals and objectives (10 minutes)

  • Ask the staff member to contribute goals and objectives for the coming year.
  • Discuss goals that will be motivating and challenging for the employee.
  • Collaborate on the goals for the coming year.

Training and development (5 minutes)

  • Ask the staff member what training they think they need to take to be able to help them in their job.
  • Ask if there are any longer term career goals that they wish to discuss.

Feedback from the employee (10 minutes)

  • Ask if there are any questions, concerns or ideas on how to make the coming year more productive and valuable.
  • Let the employee have the last word, even if you don’t agree.

Close on an encouraging note (3 minutes)

  • Set the tone for the coming year, be supportive and provide encouragement.