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Performance Appraisal Appeals – Scenarios and Solutions

Follow-up and appeal in an appraisal process are words that arouse controversy. Does that mean you should not appeal even when you get an unfair rating? Not at all. You should request for a follow-up and get things clear between you and your manager to produce impactful results the following year. The one aspect that you should consider is that you should not appeal just based on your instinct; instead, you must have solid documents supporting your statements.  

Here are a few scenarios where you can appeal to revise your ratings.   

  1. You worked overtime on a project that is due for next year, and so you could not focus on the current projects. If you were reviewed based on the current projects and got a low rating, you can appeal. But before appealing, go through the records and get proof of what your manager expected you to do. If the management expected you to work on current projects, you cannot request a follow-up to revise your rating.  
  2. It is hard to speak about manager bias, but it is a truth that we cannot deny. Nepotism happens in many workplaces because of managers who do not have proper training in leadership qualities. Are you an employee who got a 5/5 rating in the previous year because of your excellent work and got a below-average rating this year because of a new manager? You can appeal if you have solid proof of the qualitative and quantitative work that you have done.  
  3. If you are reviewed based on the criteria that are not present in your job description, then you can do a follow-up. For instance, you are a developer and your description does not require making good public presentations. Even so, if you were rated based on one of your messed up public presentations, then you can appeal showing your job description and the on-time completed development projects. 

Although you have proof, always remember to appeal politely and formally because the manager would have his/her own reasons. A manager’s responsibility is to ensure that there are no surprises for your employees during the review. If the manager has convincing evidence for a review, then the manager should let the team members know beforehand and so your employees would not do wrong follow-ups.  

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Solution: If you are an employee, you should answer the following questions before starting to work on a project. What is your goal for this year? What are the performance criteria? For what you are being paid for. You should also get the approval of your manager before taking up a project. If you are a manager, you should communicate effectively with your team members through continuous feedback to avoid surprises for your employees during the review meeting.     

Being a manager, if you receive a follow-up request from your employee, you should not treat him as your enemy. You should conduct a one-on-one meeting with him to explain your stance and also be open-minded to listen to his opinion and understand his reasons. Use software that supports the appeal process so that your employees can reach you easily. 

Performance reviews are not a time of criticism but an opportunity to work on your weaknesses and strengthen your strength. A good performance review leads to professional development.