Performance Evaluations Don't Always Help Avert Lawsuits

by on June 3, 2009 · 0 Comment POSTED IN: HR Info Center

Employees can use performance evaluations against companies

More often than not, when you face off against an employee and they take you to court, it’s the employee who first introduces into evidence the company’s performance evaluations.

Now, isn’t that interesting? If the number one reason you’re doing performance evaluations is to protect yourselves from our people and yet the biggest thing they’re using against us is these stupid performance evaluations. Doesn’t it make you wonder what the devil we’re up to?

If the employees and their lawyers were to try to defend themselves, they would say it’s not their problem. It’s the company’s problem because the managers don’t have a backbone when it comes to performance evaluations. They ought to step up and tell people they’re worthless months ago instead of all of a sudden coming out one year and saying that they fail to meet expectations after years of telling them they’re exceeding expectations.

And then you find yourself in court explaining how at Lake Woebegone Incorporated, all of the employees are above average. Therefore, to be average is really below average.

There was a category on there that says fails to meet expectations. But people tend to use that posthumously. In other words, if the person’s leaving, you’ll check the one or the zero or whatever on the performance scale. We don’t tend to do it until the 11th hour.

Now, managers aren’t alone in all these. They take the first hit. But the second hit goes to HR who’s blamed for not training properly. If HR people could train properly, managers would grow a backbone. And we wouldn’t be having this problem. Either way, it is now a legal issue.

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