100 Examples of Performance Appraisal Phrases for Employee Reviews

Many companies have performance review procedures to acknowledge employees’ strengths and improve their weaknesses. As a result, a manager writes employee reviews regularly. However, not all their comments are effective, mainly because they aren’t consistent, accurate, straightforward, or personalized.

As performance review examples are everywhere, it’s easy to find inspiration. What is not so easy is to use the right appraisal phrases for the right employee, the right purpose, and at the right time in the employee’s career. To convey your message and improve your relationship with your employees, use different appraisal phrases and review comments for different types of reviews. Clarify what the employees are doing well and where they need to improve. Remember to mention why they need to improve. People need to understand what is asked of them and why.

For example: As [data] shows, you are good at doing [action]. I/others appreciate this very much. But from [data], we can see that you need to improve at [action] because it undermines your/our/the team’s goals. My suggestion is to do [action].

Last but not least, be honest and respectful. Don’t copy-paste appraisal phrases from one review to another without considering to whom the comment is addressed. To help you find the phrases that boost people’s morale and motivate them to work harder, check out the following samples of employee review phrases.


Punctuality & Attendance

All managers want their employees to arrive on time and respect their work schedules. Therefore, many companies use attendance tracking systems that monitor employee absences. However, just demanding something isn’t enough. You must acknowledge their efforts and show appreciation to your most punctual employees. 

At the same time, you need to understand why some people struggle to arrive on time and find a way to help them. It may be a personalized work schedule that allows your employees to reach better attendance. Or it may be supporting their commute, offering mentorship, or looking after their health.

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

1.    You always meet the company’s standards for attendance and punctuality.

2.    You are one of our most punctual employees, with no registered delays in the last year.

3.    I’m pleased to say that you’ve never missed a meeting or been late for one.

4.    I can always rely on your punctuality, whether it is about a workday, meeting, or business event.

5.    You an example of reliability, punctuality, and responsibility. You are right on time every day.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

6.    Unfortunately, you need to work on your punctuality. You don’t meet the company’s standards on attendance.

7.    Over the last year, you registered more absences than allowed. Please make sure it doesn’t happen again.

8.    Exceeding the number of leave days you are entitled to leads to reduced personal performance and affects your colleagues. You aren’t reliable and should improve in this area.

9.    Lately, you are late to meetings, affecting the entire team.

10.    I’ve noticed you are frequently late to work in the morning. Is it something we can help with to improve your punctuality?


Time Management

Time management is essential for reaching productivity goals and a stress-free work environment. If one employee doesn’t meet the deadline, the entire team suffers.

Like punctuality, poor time management may have many causes, including a too-busy work schedule, dividing between too many tasks, procrastinating, wasting too much time on repetitive tasks, and others. As a manager, you can improve your employee’s abilities to manage their time. So, provide not only feedback but also solutions.

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

11.    Your time management skills are an example for your team. You always deliver on time.

12.    I appreciate how you manage your time while respecting your coworkers’ time.

13.    As a manager, I can depend on you to finish on time.

14.    You have exquisite organizational qualities that reflect in your work. Never missed a deadline.

15.    You are driven to finish on time and keep up with the schedule.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

16.    I’ve noticed you struggle with delivering on time. It’s something you should consider improving.

17.    You waste too much time with less important tasks and miss important deadlines. Please, prioritize better.

18.    You don’t finish on time, affecting your coworkers.

19.    You lack the ability to self-managing your time. How can I help you improve?

20.    You spend too much time discussing with your colleagues, affecting your work. Focus on your tasks first and then use the remaining time to help others.


Productivity

Most employee review comments focus on productivity, which is essential to the employee’s work performance. It’s only natural for a manager to show appreciation for hard work or notice reduced productivity. Sometimes, the employee may lack motivation, struggle with time management, prioritization, or be unable to complete their tasks.

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

21.    Last year, your productivity was impressive. Well done.

22.    You always try to improve your productivity, and it shows.

23.    Your commitment to high standards of productivity inspires your coworkers.

24.    You have achieved outstanding productivity performances each year.

25.    You deliver high volumes of work by working smart and helping your colleagues keep up.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

26.    You don’t meet the company’s productivity standards, which is concerning.

27.    Your lack of focus and time management abilities lead to poor productivity.

28.    Don’t settle with the least you can do. Your productivity has decreased since the last review.

29.    I’ve noticed a decrease in your monthly productivity and overall performance. Please, adjust your focus so that your results get better.

30.    You need to improve your productivity, as data shows you are behind your teammates.


Teamwork

When the team works well together, people are more likely to have better productivity, high morale, and increased motivation. A healthy team environment supports individuals, reduces conflicts, and encourages cooperation and communication. You can help your employees develop better work relationships by praising effective teamwork, pointing out problems, and providing solutions. Below you can find some examples that you can use anytime to help you in the performance evaluation:

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

31.    You are a fantastic team player under any circumstances.

32.    Your team can count on you to help them with challenging tasks. Additionally, the way you boost the morale of your colleagues is impressive.

33.    I admire how much you support your team.

34.    You denote excellent skills for working within a team and collaborating with everyone involved.

35.    You are always ready to help your coworkers, and they appreciate you a lot.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

36.    You need to work on taking time to listen and support your team members.

37.    I’ve noticed that you put your tasks before the team’s goals. You can’t reach your potential without learning to collaborate and communicate with your colleagues.

38.    You don’t seem to consider others’ opinions or listen to their solutions.

39.    You must learn to express your feelings and opinions straightforwardly and respectfully.

40.    If one team member fails, the entire team fails. You need to help and encourage your colleagues more.


Leadership

Learning to be a good leader is a hard job. Support your team leaders by providing valuable and honest feedback, even if it may be negative. We all learn from our mistakes. Although performance feedback is good, you should also provide feedback on their social skills, communication abilities, and soft skills.

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

41.    Your actions encourage the team members to do their best and reach their goals.

42.    I admire you for leading by personal example and supporting your staff.

43.    You give your staff everything they need to accomplish their personal and professional goals.

44.    I appreciate your way of including everybody, building confidence, and offering transparent feedback to your team.

45.    You communicate well, provide guidelines when needed, and encourage your team members to be autonomous and robust.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

46.    I’ve noticed that you put your personal results before the team’s achievements.

47.    You could find more time to explain tasks to people and ensure they know what to do.

48.    You should prioritize the tasks better, as many of your team members struggle to meet deadlines.

49.    A leader should be objective and impartial. Make sure all your team members feel equally appreciated and acknowledged.

50.    Your communication skills aren’t the best. As a result, your subordinates aren’t aware of the last changes in task planning.


Communication

Communication appraisal phrases recognize how much of the company’s performance is due to communication within and between departments. You want people to feel open to discussing their issues, take the initiative on difficult tasks, and share their ideas and expertise. Therefore, you praise their good communication skills and underline the issues on which they have to keep working. But to deliver the right message, you must also communicate it properly.

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

51.    You denote excellent communication skills that all the departments praise.

52.    I trust your communication skills to keep people informed, up-to-date, and motivated.

53.    Your patience in explaining things and willingness to listen to others’ opinions are some of your best personality traits.

54.    I know I can count on you to communicate both good news and difficult decisions.

55.    You can give directions and make people understand our point very easily.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

56.    You must improve your communication skills as many people complain they don’t understand your directions.

57.    You often forget to inform your colleagues about the progress of your tasks.

58.    Your unread email list piles up quickly. People have been waiting for a response for days.

59.    You tend to speak too much during meetings and interrupt the speaker with unnecessary comments.

60.    I know you are a quiet person, but your teammates need to know your point of view and count on your expertise.


Performance

Most companies regularly provide performance feedback as an overall perspective of the employee’s work. Performance levels use metrics to measure employee achievements in different categories, such as productivity, time management, reaching goals, professional development, communication, teamwork, and others related to the job knowledge of the peers. Performance appraisal phrases may refer to any chapter of an employee’s work life. 

Related: In case you're looking to setup the objectives and goals for your employees, we can help with key examples.

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

61.    Since the last performance review, you have made improvements and are much closer to reaching your goals.

62.    You are consistent in your work and always try to improve yourself.

63.    You are a trustful team player, always finding time to help others without decreasing productivity.

64.    I appreciate the way you handled the difficult time we’ve been through. You’ve listened to my suggestions.

65.    You are an excellent employee, a top performer, and one of our best communicators.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

66.    You did not meet the performance goal set last year. You still need to improve.

67.    Over the last month, your productivity has decreased considerably.

68.    You meet your goals, but the quality of your work isn’t the best.

69.    I’ve noticed that you struggle to find the time to discuss with your colleagues and take on new projects.

70.    You lack the willingness to acquire new skills and become a better professional.


Learning New Skills

Managers want their employees to be good at what they do and be willing to improve themselves, learn new skills, and acquire more experience. They need to see employees on a positive path from one employee review to another. 

One way to engage employees in learning new skills is by providing training, mentorship, or access to professional classes. Another way is to encourage employees to continue their studies, attend business conferences and events, and collaborate with their peers from different organizations. In the section below you will find a set of performance review sample on skills for your peers:

Tip: If you're seeking areas of improvement for your coworkers, we have some ideas.

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

71.    You are proactively looking to improve yourself and learn new skills.

72.    Among our employees, you are in the top three in completing all the training available in our company.

73.    You promote a learning culture and are an example for your colleagues.

74.    I admire your determination to finish your studies and broaden your horizon in a new field.

75.    You’ve become an expert in so many fields that promotion is required.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

76.    You seem to reject any supplementary training or course that isn’t precisely fitting your profile.

77.    While you are good at what you are doing, you lack the willingness to acquire soft skills that will help you improve your teamwork.

78.    Among our employees, you are in the bottom five in completing the training provided by the company.

79.    Upskilling your profile will improve your career path. However, you don’t manage to find time to attend any courses.

80.    You have a traditional approach to learning, which doesn’t let you explore new topics.


Mentorship

Similar to leaders, mentors also need feedback. They need to know that their work is appreciated and the weaknesses they should work on. The learning process never ends, regardless of your position in the organizational chart. Find more samples of comments to help with your employee evaluation report:

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

81.    You are an excellent mentor who only receives good reviews from his trainees. 

82.    During the last year, the juniors you’ve mentored reached their goals and were promoted. Well done!

83.    You are a warm, calm, and thoughtful mentor who always knows how to convey the strongest messages in the best form.

84.    I admire your capacity to adapt to each individual’s personality to help them become more focused and engaged.

85.    You have a way with people that always brings them in the right direction.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

86.    During the last year, only half of your trainees made improvements.

87.    You have achieved an average rate in the reviews received from your students.

88.    Juniors in your mentorship program complained you don’t have enough time to discuss their issues. Learn to better delegate and prioritize tasks.

89.    Your approach to mentorship is rigid and doesn’t fit all employees’ profiles. You need to be more flexible to accommodate a broader range of personalities.

90.    Your approach should be more inclusive and provide equal chances for everyone.


Customer Service

Managers may also have a thing to say about how their employees treat the customers. From one employee review to another, you should see improvements in how people behave and an increase in customer satisfaction levels. Point out what you appreciate and want to grow within the team. But remember to mention drawbacks and issues that need to be solved quickly.

Examples of Positive Appraisal Phrases

91.    You have increased our responsiveness to clients’ demands by 20%. As a result, we receive many positive reviews from our regular customers.

92.    Clients have told us you are extremely polite and eager to help them.

93.    Last year, your score based on customer reviews was 4.8 from 5 possible. Well done!

94.    You have a friendly attitude that calms people down and helps them understand our products and services.

95.    Your attention to detail is exceptional. When you explain a procedure, everyone understands.

Examples of Need-to-Work-on Phrases

96.    You take too much time to deal with a customer, which leads to a long waiting queue.

97.    You talk too much about useless details and fail to explain what the client needs to know.

98.    You deliver standard messages but don’t take time to understand people’s complaints and give personalized answers.

99.    Your knowledge of our new products is poor. Please make time to read the latest materials we’ve provided.

100.    Although we discourage violent and negative clients, they shouldn’t upset you so much. Follow the procedure and move on to the next client.


Conclusion

Performance appraisal phrases follow the development of your employees and act as guidelines between reviews. They create a trustful work environment, improve communication between managers and employees, and motivate people to become better employees. At the same time, appraisal phrases acknowledge employees’ qualities and show them that you notice when they work hard, take the initiative, help their colleagues, or are punctual. Reviews shouldn’t be scary. They should be beneficial.

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