More men cry after appraisals than women

Male tearfulness is just one of the findings from fascinating research into appraisals by a leading tech firm

More men cry after appraisals than women
Not many of us enjoy appraisals, whether we’re on the giving or receiving end. They can be awkward, especially if there’s negative feedback, and employees can end up feeling demotivated if they don’t go well. But it would seem that men find the whole process more emotional than women, if the results of a new study are to be believed.

The recent report, carried out by the computer software company Adobe, revealed that 25% of men have cried after an appraisal, compared with only 18% of women. Millennial males in particular said they’d been upset following performance reviews, indicating that younger men are more sensitive to criticism about their work than older generations.

The study focused on how appraisals affect staff morale in the workplace, and the results were revealing. Out of the 1,500 US workers surveyed, almost two thirds believe they’re an outdated method of managing performance. Around 30% claimed they’d left an organisation following a review, and more than half said the process had no effect on the way they did their jobs.

Adobe got rid of its performance management process in 2012 because of the negative reactions people have to appraisals. The company now prefers to encourage a culture of continuous improvement by asking managers to give feedback on the how employees are doing regularly.

Donna Morris, Adobe’s executive vice president of customer and employee experience, said the decision has had a dramatic impact on Adobe’s workforce. “The findings from this survey show how time-consuming, cumbersome and demotivating performance reviews are for many employees. The results have been higher engagement, improved retention and stronger company performance.”

This article was written by Caroline Smith.

Related stories:

How appraisal systems influence company culture

How technology is changing performance management

How to simplify the performance management process

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