1. Secret talent reviews and performance ratings
At one of my previous jobs, I was one of the talents in the company. However, I wasn’t aware of this until I mentioned to my colleague a meeting with the top management that I was informed about by mail. She was quite surprised that she didn’t get the notice. I had no idea this meeting was for “talents” only. Actually nobody had informed me that I was one of the talents. And obviously, the other “non-talents” were not informed about having such in the company as well.
I felt horrible and guilty for mentioning the meeting.
For sure it was not a pleasure for mypeer to find out from me about this.
I realized a part of my company’s culture is to keep silent about being a talent and what talents do. Because it would make the others feel uncomfortable.
The truth was I felt no less uncomfortable than the others.
Young talents have different perceptions now. They expect transparency from the HR and the management. We need to set examples. Newcomers love role-models, it gives them an idea of the strengths they need to get there. I had such a role-model at my first job, it was a lady with so-called ‘extraordinary performance” (and this was not kept secret) who became the youngest partner in our company. I admired her work and motivation, I still follow and learn from her.
In this way, transparent performance reviews can be seen more as motivation rather than discouragement by the employees. As strange as it may sound, I consider transparency key for the feeling of job safety. The truth is they will feel more threatened if they are not clear about their performance.
The main advantages of transparency in talent and performance reviews are:
- Norms are set – By showing your employees which behaviors are driving results, you set the norms for what they should strive for.
- Peer pressure is actually a motivation, especially for young people. They are the cooperation not the competition generation. You can see how great results achieved by one motivate the others and lead to sharing of best practices among the talents.
- Friendly working environment is much more likely to be established if there are no ‘dirty’ secrets between the employees, ‘dirty’ meaning things they don’t usually discuss such as their reviews, ratings or talent meetings.
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