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Evaluating Performance Reviews

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1 How Coaching Can Fix What's Broken | Yet again this summer I got caught up watching the Wimbledon tennis championships. The players are growing visibly better each season, and as I pondered just how they are always able to improve, I was reminded of the old ways we taught players to be "ready." We would drill them with simple reminders of the fundamentals: racket up, be on the balls of your feet, bounce around. All too often, when a player hit the court they would end up thinking, "racket up, balls of the feet, keep bouncing" followed by something like "get your feet right," "change your grip," or "follow through." More often than not, the result of our well-intended reminders was an incredible hindrance to the players' performance. They became focused on their grip, their feet, and their follow- through. They became so busy remembering all the fundamentals they couldn't even see the ball as it crossed the net. Frequently, the key to overcoming similar hurdles and to transform such an approach is by teaching players to simply "hunt" for the ball. When they hunted, they automatically did the things that, as coaches, we thought we needed to instruct them to do. "Hunting" rid them of distractions and helped them to focus on the right thing. And as a result they performed better than ever before. Similarly, in corporations it's tempting for leaders to overcoach certain fundamentals. For example, they look at a performer through the lens of an annual checklist and call it "evaluating performance." Many managers use that one interaction to communicate needs and encouragement, course-correct failed expectations, and evaluate compensation. In fact, most managers (and their reports) believe that people can't improve or progress in their career without it. They both think they need a formal "performance review" to assess a potential bonus or increase, and as a tool to enforce discipline. The review has become a fundamental way of doing business—even if it's actually a distraction. by Alan Fine | InsideOut Development Founder and President They both think they need a formal "performance review" to assess an increase, and to enforce discipline. The review has become a fundamental way of doing business—even if it's a distraction. Just like in sports, managers tend to overcoach the fundamentals. What would be the impact if we focus less on an annual checklist to improve performance? Is it time to blow up Performance Reviews? HOW COACHING CAN FIX WHAT'S BROKEN

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