100 Useful Phrases for Performance Reviews

by Sabrina Son on Feb 10, 2016 8:00:00 AM

100_Useful_Phrases_for_Performance_Reviews_1Unless you're actually a robot, it's easy to say the wrong thing at the wrong time. Especially when it comes to a tender matter like performance reviews. And there are many resources out there that list forbidden performance review topics like personalities, rumors, or speculations. That's great and all, but now you're self-conscious about what you can say. 

So here's a helpful list of 100 phrases — based off the book Effective Phrases For Performance Appraisals — that you should start including in your performance reviews. Keep in mind that these are starter phrases and you should be specific when you're writing any feedback for reviews.



1. Achieves optimal levels of performance and accomplishment with / for ...

2. Provides strong evidence of [specific accomplishment]

3. Excels at developing programs / strategies that have delivered X results

4. Improved production by X% through [specific task]

5. Exceeded the original goal of X by X% through [specific task]



6. Continuously examines administrative effectiveness and seeks better procedures such as [tasks]

7. Develops successful administrative strategies such as [task] that led to [results]

8. Establishes effective systems for information retrieval through [task]

9. Improves administrative support systems through [task]

10. Keeps documents organized via [task] to avoid duplicate information



11. Shows a sincere interest in employees and the solutions to their problems

12. Lends support and guidance to employees by [task]

13. Uses sound coaching techniques to solve disciplinary problems

14. Provides continuous coaching

15. Is highly respected by employees for sharing concerns, problems, and opportunities


Communication Skills

16. Effectively communicates expectations

17. Excels in facilitating group discussions

18. Keeps meetings action oriented by [task]

19. Effectively communicates upward, downward, and laterally

20. Enforces company policies and values without creating negative reactions



21. Encourages collaboration with the team

22. Shares ideas and techniques

23. Builds strong relationships with others by [task]

24. Displays a harmonious and cooperative spirit by [task]

25. Gladly shares expertise



26. Seeks creative alternatives such as [examples] that drove [results]

27. Clever and imaginative when confronted with obstacles

28. Is continuously experimenting to drive [results]

29. Initiates and executes creative ideas such as [example]

30. Seeks new ideas and approaches



31. Empowers employees with the authority and resources to achieve X results

32. Helps employees gain visibility through [task]

33. Encourages employees to solve their own problems

34. Delegates to match personal strengths

35. Delegates with clearly defined responsibility and authority



36. Develops continuous improvement methods

37. Develops totally new strategies

38. Continues to grow and improve

39. Devises improved means of accomplishing results

40. Is continuously planning for improvement



41. Develops innovative strategies such as [example] ...

42. Is very innovative under adverse conditions

43. Seeks innovative solutions

44. Fosters a curiosity for innovative possibilities

45. Promotes innovation by [example]


Interpersonal Skills

46. Recognizes the needs of others and reaches out to lend a helping hand

47. Establishes effective working relationships

48. Generates synergy

49. Builds on mutual dependence and understanding

50. Promotes the company culture among peers


Learning Ability

51. Displays an ability to learn rapidly and adapt quickly to changing situations

52. Shares learning experience with peers

53. Promotes a learning culture

54. Committed to continuously learning through [example]

55. Responds quickly to new instructions, situations, methods, and procedures


Management Ability

56. Provides team with support through [example]

57. Collaborates with individual team members to establish a development path

58. Holds employees accountable for their own results

59. Provides team with the resources needed to attain restults

60. Provides support during periods of organizational change



61. Develops workable action plans

62. Creates flexible plans to meet changing opportunities

63. Effectively puts plans into action

64. Excels in developing strategic alternatives

65. Effectively formulates strategies, tactics, and action plans to drive X results



66. Is capable of distinguished performance in a higher-level position

67. Has reached the level for promotional consideration

68. Is capable of handling bigger projects and assignments

69. Is making a strong effort to acquire greater experience and skills to increase potential for advancement

70. Is enhancing growth potential through additional education and training


Problem Solving

71. Displays a practical approach to solving problems

72. Develops creative solutions

73. Turns problems into opportunities

74. Effectively solves problems rather than symptoms

75. Is skilled in proposing optional solutions



76. Exceeds normal output standards

77. Continuously produces more than expected

78. Is an important contributor to the successes of the department

79. Makes a substantial contribution to the continued operation and growth of the organization

80. Consistently exceeds performance goals


Project Management

81. Completed X project with X results

82. Sets realistic timetables to keep projects on target

83. Is transparent with a project's progress

84. Makes effective use of all available resources when given a project

85. Clearly establishes project goals and objectives


Supervisory Skills

86. Gives consistent recognition to employees

87. Maintains a work situation which stimulates the growth of individual employees

88. Makes certain that employees have a clear understanding of their responsibilities

89. Is readily available for support to employees

90. Recognizes and deals with signs of employee burnout


Time Management

91. Consistently meets all deadlines

92. Prepares meeting agendas that are concise and time saving

93. Keeps meetings on schedule

94. Respects the time of others

95. Makes effective use of discretionary time



96. Excels in living the organiational values

97. Promotes strong support of company's mission and vision

98. Is able to turn visions into actual action plans

99. Demonstrates an ability to transfer vision into execution

100. Excels in contributing to the company's goals


Again, these phrases mean nothing unless you attach specific examples and data to them. To ensure a performance review is truly effective, remember to evaluate on data rather than assumption.



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This post was written by Sabrina Son

Sabrina is the managing editor for the TINYpulse blog. A Seattle native, she loves her morning (or anytime) coffee, spending her weekends on the mountains, and of course, the famous rain.

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