Conducting and Writing Effective Performance Evaluations Division of Human Resources The City College of New York
Overview • President’s Strategic Goals • Managing Change • Performance Evaluation and Assessment • Communication, Writing and Conducting the Review • When Termination is Necessary
President’s Strategic Goals 1. Provide a world-class education to all of our students, raising graduation and retention rates. 2. Support the heart of our great university – our faculty – in their research, scholarship and teaching, to attract and retain excellence. 3. Raise the visibility of the College in the community and expand the substantive collaboration with important community organizations.
Change Agent (YOU) • Communicates how the employee contributes to the vision or mission of the College. • Addresses how well or how poorly the employee fulfilled their responsibilities. • Identifies the impact of the employee’s performance. • Identifies goals for the next review period.
The Coaching Manager Does: Communicate high expectations, desired behaviors, attitudes and actions. Does: Provide immediate communication when a desirable or undesirable behavior or action is demonstrated. Does: Meet regularly with employees to track progress
How to Provide Effective Feedback • Baseline: Job Description • Connect job description and performance • Summarize your feedback in the first sentence. • Address behaviors and attitudes • Identify outcomes and impact • Outline Next Steps • Provide the employee an opportunity to read and initial the feedback.
Documenting Performance Write Clearly: Keep sentences simple and to the point. Avoid the need to overly defend your evaluation rating. Stay objective: Stick to the facts, omit personal judgments. Exclude comments that are chastising such as… “You should know better” Address Performance, rather than personal traits or characteristics
Corrective Steps • Training • Reassignment • Disciplinary Action • Non-Reappointment/Termination
How Evaluations Go Wrong • Feedback is provided through insulting or abusive language. • Evaluations are limited only to “poor performers”. • Evaluations are done inconsistently. • Poor evaluations are given when employees are expected to receive permanency without prior documented guidance.
Things to Avoid Personal Judgments Example: I have noticed that you have a problem checking your reports for accuracy. Obviously, you do not care about how we look to other departments and have no regard for our reputation on campus. Corrected Version: I am very concerned at how your inaccuracy reflects upon the professionalism of this office.
Things to Avoid Too much detail Example: On November 5, you sent an email to one of our Distinguished faculty. Instead of referring to her as Dr. Taylor, you referred to her as Sue. Corrected Version: In an academic setting, it is customary for individuals to use proper titles when sending correspondence of an official nature, I have noticed that you often refer to faculty by their first names and this does not reflect appropriate standards or professionalism.
Things to Avoid Inappropriate Remarks Sarcasm has no place in a performance evaluation! Example: Mark is absent more than he is in the office and he’s always late. He is always blaming his lateness on train problems, if the MTA knew about this they would sue him for defamation. Correction: Mark has frequent issues with lateness and attendance. Mark attributes this to train problems, however, given the frequency I do not accept this reason for his lateness.
Evaluation Conference 1. Have an outline prepared in advance with talking points. Ex: Did not exhibit customer service Cite Example Did not follow-up on deadlines Cite Example Did not advise students properly Cite Example
Evaluation Conference • State your points clearly • Do not negotiate the performance review • Do not respond to inappropriate comments or questions. • Allot enough time to discuss your comments and to hear the employee’s response. • If the employee becomes hostile, end the discussion.
Conference Memorandum • Must be given to employee within ten days. • Employee should be asked to sign or initial • The Employee may attach comments at any time. • If employee refuses to sign, the document should simply state “Employee refuses to sign”
Conference Memorandum • Begin the memorandum by stating the rating that the employee will receive for the evaluation period. • Use the body of the memorandum to explain your rating. • Refrain from using too much detail. • Refrain from making comments which explain the employee’s behavior. • The memorandum should be no longer than one or two pages.
Example One Name: Amanda Title: Advisor (Higher Education Assistant) Duties: Designs and implements recruitment activities and retention initiatives. Behaviors: Rude to students Poor writing skills Misses deadlines
Amanda: Performance Statements As the Advisor to the Division of Organic Science, Amanda is responsible for overseeing the advising and retention activities of students. In this review period I am giving her an unsatisfactory rating. Within the last 10 months, I have observed that Amanda does not display good customer service skills as a result, students have left the program or have issued complaints which take a significant amount of time to investigate.
Example Two Name: Patrick Title: Deputy (Higher Education Officer) Behaviors: Takes several weeks/months to complete projects Does not check work/inaccuracies Does not prioritize Does not follow-up
Patrick: Performance Statement As a Higher Education Officer, Patrick has been employed at the College for 17 years. For this review period, Patrick’s performance has been rated as unsatisfactory. I have observed that it takes Patrick several weeks or months to complete projects. When the work was completed, there were several errors. As a result, we could not use the documents that Patrick provided and someone else had to take over the project.
Conclusion • Communicate Regularly (No surprises!) • Be diligent in documenting issues • Always tie the performance to the mission • Steer clear from assessing the individual but rather focus on performance