Whether it’s where to go to lunch, the quality of a project proposal, the best candidate for a job, or anything in between, differences of opinion aren’t uncommon in the workplace. When you bring together a bunch of people with varied backgrounds, it’s inevitable.
Opinions on performance management are no exception. In fact, BambooHR performed a study that reveals employees have wildly different experiences with performance management. Using the results, we’ve created an infographic that breaks down employees’ perceptions of performance management by several demographic factors, including gender, job level, and by generation.
Overall, men report more positive experiences with performance management than women do. This could have several negative impacts on the workplace, including women feeling less inclined to openly share feedback 1) for fear that it won’t be kept confidential and 2) because they lack confidence that their feedback will result in meaningful changes.
Fortunately, men and women agree on the best way to improve performance reviews to motivate and engage employees: open, informal conversations. When managers have informal feedback sessions with employees on a regular basis, they can establish trusting relationships. It’s also a great way to keep a finger on the pulse of the organization and make small changes to incorporate feedback along the way—which, in turn, can help employees feel more confident that they’re being heard.
While millennials seem to be the generation in need of the most attention in other workplace aspects, they also report the most satisfaction with performance management. As employees age, they tend to feel less confident that their feedback is kept confidential and see fewer changes as a result of the feedback they offer. This trend is somewhat surprising considering older employees are more likely to be in management roles. Not to mention, the increased experience of older employees should make their feedback highly valued.
While millennial employees are more satisfied with performance management, you may want to consider whether or not your current review system allows subjective, unfairly-critical feedback. Compared to employees age 45-65, more than twice as many employees age 21-44 admit that they are tough on coworkers to make themselves look better. To curb the negativity, consider the questions you’re asking and how you can adjust them to solicit honest answers.
Do you know the crucial elements of an effective performance management system? Download our Definitive Guide to Performance Management to find out.
Surprise! Organizational leaders think organizational processes are more effective than contributors do. Specifically, contributors feel less heard, less comfortable being honest, and less confident that performance reviews are effective than managers and HR professionals do.
While we weren’t genuinely shocked by these results, they are important to recognize. If we want an accurate picture of how anything in our organizations is viewed, it’s important that we look beyond the opinions of our own department heads and other leaders.
Even though differences of opinion are unavoidable, there are steps you can take to improve the effectiveness of and your employees’ experiences with your performance management system. Get started by downloading and reviewing the entire Perspectives on Performance Management infographic.