Performance reviews are a necessary evil in any business, and property management companies are no exception. These meetings are what keep everyone on the same page and help to push forward to achieve individual goals. And while bringing managers and employees together in a healthy exchange of feedback can produce great results, reviews often dreaded by both parties. The good news is, by taking the following steps, you can make the entire process a stress-free experience for everyone.
Don’t over-complicate things.
One of the biggest reasons reviews are so stressful is because people tend to make them more complicated than they need to be. Make it easy and straightforward by creating a toolkit for managers that includes a calendar for keeping track of dates, sample reviews, guidelines to keep meetings on track and anything else you deem pertinent. Set up automated reminders so everyone can prepare accordingly and nobody is caught off guard.
Make conversation a part of your culture.
Instead of focusing all of your efforts on one or two meetings throughout the year, create a culture within your property management company where conversation and feedback are welcome and ongoing. Yes, formal performance reviews are important, but keeping the lines of communication open all the time will make these meetings much less cumbersome and far more productive.
Look forward, not backward.
It’s true that the best predictor of future performance is past behavior, but if your reviews are all about hashing up what your employees have done over the previous weeks, months and years, you’re missing a tremendous opportunity to improve the future of your property management company. If something needs to be brought up, do so briefly, but you should be focusing more on setting measurable goals for the upcoming year. This will make your reviews more productive and results-driven (not to mention more pleasant to experience).
Make them a two-way street.
Performance reviews aren’t only about evaluating the employee. They’re also a great opportunity to start an honest, productive dialogue. To accomplish this, managers should be encouraged to ask open-ended questions and solicit feedback from employees. Most importantly, managers need to listen to what’s being said. By encouraging employees to share their thoughts and ideas, you can use reviews to drive innovation within your property management company.
Remove compensation from the equation.
Far too often, business leaders link compensation directly to the performance review process. But doing so can actually hinder progress. For instance, when an employee believes he or she is eligible for a raise at the end of a review, they might hold back valuable feedback that could potentially lead to service improvement and growth. To avoid this, make compensation a separate issue. As a result, your performance reviews will become more meaningful and actionable.
Performance reviews are an essential part of running a successful property management company. By employing the above strategies, you can streamline the process, making it less stressful, more productive and a much more positive experience for everyone involved.