Employment Law Blog

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Managers Must Give Accurate Performance Evaluations

One of the biggest mistakes made by managers is giving poorly performing employees average ratings on performance evaluations.  While it is very difficult to do, managers must give accurate performance evaluations, especially to poorly performing employees.  Otherwise, any subsequent adverse employment action taken against the employee is susceptible to legal challenge.  A common situation is that a poor performing employee with average performance evaluations goes out on pregnancy, disability, or other protected leave.  If the performance issues are not documented before the employee goes on leave, any action taken against this employee while on leave or soon after they return can appear to be retaliation for going out on protected leave.  At that point, assertions that the manager was about to address the performance issues will appear to self-serving and disregarded.   Thus, the manager will not only be forced to keep a spot open for the poorly performing employee who is on leave, but will have to wait a reasonable time after the employee returns before addressing the performance issues.

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