Can employee reviews really be positive and profitable? You bet! Follow the steps in this article and the changes in your property management company will be felt immediately! How you and your company handle each employee review is a direct reflection of your leadership and the importance of each individual within your property management company.
Preparing for Each Review
Start by establishing the frequency and time frame for your company employee reviews and be certain this is outlined in your administrative guidelines and employee manual. If each review is tied to a person’s anniversary date, keeping track of employee review schedules can be a challenge. Consider doing all reviews during two months of the year, for instance–November and May. Each of your managers should be given a blank copy of the review form required by your property management company, and a list of their team members, who are scheduled for a review. Instruct your managers/supervisors to prepare each review in a typed format, as this makes it easy to read and looks more professional when being presented. Lastly, ask each of your managers to give you a copy of the final review notes, prior to it being formally presented. This gives you an opportunity to assess the quality of the work being done by each of your managers/supervisors and gives you a window for making any changes.
Tip From The Coach: In the same way you give a blank copy of the employee review form to your managers/supervisors, give a blank copy of the review form to each person being reviewed. This will give your employees an opportunity to make notes about their performance, prior to each performance review. This step is critical because it allows each of your managers to “see” the gap between their point of view versus their employees’ point of view. This gap is exactly where the best coaching can be done to improve the performance of each person on your property management team.
Conducting Each Review
Since your manager and your employee will both be well prepared for this review, the exchange of ideas and the depth of feedback will make for a rich and rewarding meeting. The review should start by having your manager explain how each person’s review is a special time for personal and professional growth and the tone for each review will be both positive and productive. Have your manager begin by reading out loud the first question, then read his/her comments about their employee. Next, their employee should read their comments out loud. After each person has read their response to the first question, then specific feedback should be given by your manager or supervisor, about how the comments are similar and a discussion about any comments that are different. This “gap” leaves room for personal and professional growth and is the perfect place to build action items to be addressed between this review and the next one. After completing the first question, have your manager continue the rest of the employee review, using this format.
Tip From The Coach: This review format communicates mutual respect for each employee of your property management company, but it must go one step further. Since the feedback of each employee is important, and since you are requesting their feedback during each employee review, a salary increase must consider the comments from both your manager and your employee. This means a final decision about the size of each person’s salary increase should be given one or two days after the review is completed. If a salary increase is given at the close of each employee’s review, this says to your employee that their feedback was not important, as the salary increase had been pre-determined in advance. I know this sounds like a small point…but it will make a BIG difference to those on your team!
Using the Review for Grooming and Growth
So, the review is finished and the paperwork can now be placed in the employee’s file to gather dust for the next year, right? Not a chance! Have your manager or supervisor end each employee review by first recapping all the positive comments that were shared and have them summarize each action-step required for improvement or growth. These action steps should focus on the goals and objectives for the next period and must be in alignment with the goals of your property management company. Have your manager schedule a short meeting in 30 days, to review the progress being made for each action item, as this review will become an important part of each month’s conversation between your manager and his/her employee. Then continue to use this employee review monthly until the anniversary of the next formal review.
Tip From The Coach: While your manager is using this “year-around” review process, ask them to keep you posted on those who are making the most progress on their action steps. This is a good sign and a strong indicator that this person has leadership abilities and can easily be groomed for additional responsibility. As you identify these leaders in your property management company, develop a second set of action steps to accelerate this person’ career path within your company.
Want to hear more about this important topic or ask some additional questions? Send an E-mail to email@example.com and The Coach will E-mail back to you a free invitation to be a participant on a PowerHour conference call. Ernest F. Oriente, a business coach since 1995, the author of SmartMatch Alliances and the founder of PowerHour has a passion for coaching his clients on executive leadership, hiring and motivating property management SuperStars. He provides private and group coaching for property management companies around North America, investment banking services and executive recruiting services. To subscribe to his FREE property management newsletter go to www.powerhour.com, call 435-615-8486 or E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.