Sometimes, having a successful quarterly review means having difficult discussions. But you know what? Difficult discussions almost always facilitate growth, and they don’t have to keep you from having a fun, productive meeting.
The quarterly review is your chance to talk about what’s working, what’s not working and how to move forward. It’s an opportunity to empower your employees and improve your company in the process — and if that’s not a win, we don’t know what is. We’ve run a quarterly review or two (or three, or 100) through the Bloom Growth software in our day, and we like to think we’ve gotten pretty good at it. Stick with us, and we’ll walk you through our best tips on making your meetings productive, efficient and fun right in the software.
1. Ask attendees to prepare ahead of time
Quarterly Reviews are so useful — and we’ve found that thinking about what you want to say beforehand takes it to the next level. After all, nothing spells F-U-N like a structured, organized itinerary! (We’re only kind of joking.)
In our experience, Quarterly Reviews require some prep work. Make sure you create a one-on-one meeting in Bloom ahead of time. Ask your employees to think about the specific issues or goals they’d like to discuss ahead of time. Providing a tool that gives your employees space to conceptualize exactly what they want to talk about will save a ton of time down the road (and lead to a more productive conversation!)
2. Keep it casual — this is NOT a performance review
Put down that red pen, because there’s no space for bad marks in this meeting. In our experience, the best conversations are not assessments of whether your employee has passed or failed the quarter. Rather, they serve to open a safe dialogue around how direct reports are feeling in their role and what supervisors can do to support them.
Sometimes, employees have been struggling and need some guidance. Other times, employees are thriving, and they just want to talk about their goals.
3. Put your listening ears on
This can be the hardest part for a lot of managers — and “hearing” and “listening” aren’t the same thing.
This doesn’t mean, “Use your employee’s feedback to solve every single problem.” It just means…listen. You might not have any answers for them, and that’s okay. Remember, this is a conversation. Part of conversing is effectively listening before you respond. Now’s the time to exercise that muscle!
4. Don’t expect to solve every single Issue
We’ve had some amazing results come from taking to-dos from these meetings and moving them to the appropriate weekly meeting in Bloom’s software. But we also know how tempting it can be to solve them right then and there. Remember, this is your employee’s time — not the company’s. You probably won’t solve every issue that comes up, but you can make sure your employee has access to the time (and the tools) to say what they need to say.
One of our favorite things about the meeting is that it’s a safe space for honesty. If the conversation moves in a difficult direction, roll with it! If you get into deep waters, throw a life raft on your Issues list.
Looking for an easy way to run your quarterly discussion? Start your 30-day free trial with Bloom growth today!