Human resource consultant Bob Milligan suggests that holding a review session with employees for 15-30 minutes each month is less formal – and often more beneficial – than an annual performance appraisal. These sessions create an ideal opportunity to provide appropriate positive, redirection or negative feedback. With a focus on two important questions, below is an informal agenda Milligan suggests using:

  • “What went really well in the last month?” This focuses on the positive and sets a great tone for the session. 
  • “What could be improved?” This does not put the employee on the defensive because it does not ask, “What went wrong?” Additionally, there should always be some form of input since there are always areas to improve. Supervisors may be amazed by what they learn and the resulting employee engagement.
  • Compare actual performance to expectations, and set expectations for the next month. Working with the employee to develop specific performance measures and expected goals for each month is the heart of this monthly review system. If a goal was not met, determine how to improve performance.
  • Discuss specific issues for the next month. Ask how the coaching session can be better next month. This helps make the system truly collaborative and allows for continuous improving.