Over the years I've stated that if you're in a leadership position and you have people working for you that you need to make sure they know where they stand and how they're doing on a regular basis, not just when it's time for job reviews. What I've discovered is that most leaders don't have any real criteria on which to base their reviews on, thus sometimes employees feel as if they're not being treated fairly while others think they're much better than they might be.

The control room at the thermal power station
World Bank Photo Collection via Compfight

In my opinion, there are 4 criteria which every employee should be judged by. Those criteria are: technical skill, efficiency, leadership potential and overall deportment. Let's go over these items in a bit more detail.

Technical skill should be easy to figure out. How well does the employee do their job? How well do they understand what it is they do? Can they solve more than the basic issues to get the job done, or to help a customer with their issues?

On a 1 to 5 scale, if you put all of these things together you should be able to figure out whether this is someone you can leave alone most of the time or if it's someone whose work you always have to review or remind how things are supposed to go.

Efficiency identifies how long it takes an employee to complete tasks, whether it's daily work or special projects you give them. Being technically proficient is a good thing unless it takes someone an hour to complete each task while it takes everyone else 3 minutes. Being technically lacking but getting work out faster than everyone else is problematic also.

Leadership potential is crucial to the overall success of your organization long term. Every employee isn't going to be interested in being a manager or supervisor, but it helps you when you know you have people who can, and do, help others and can explain in detail what needs to be done so you don't always have to do it.

Identifying leaders who you think might be interested in moving forward within an organization gives you the opportunity to groom them for success by helping them gain leadership skills; that is, if you're a good leader. Your contribution might be to help fast track them by mentioning their proficiency to others who might be able to train them better than yourself. Never be afraid to help others succeed.

Finally we have general deportment. How do they treat others? How well do they follow the rules? Are you constantly disciplining them? Do you have to chase them down because of cigarette breaks? Do they take a lot of sick days? Are they team players, out for themselves, or just want to be left alone to get their work done?

When reviewing employees if you're using a 1 to 5 scale, always start at the extremes. If you have 1's or 5's, this should be easy to identify. After that, you might have to be a bit more circumspect but that's the job of a leader. At least you'll immediately know if you have superstars or people you should think about getting rid of.

Does this help some? If you're an employee, do you think this is fair criteria?