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Meaningful Conversation

Hood College staff members created a process for formal and informal dialogue to occur throughout the year between the supervisor and the employee. This ongoing communication process provides opportunities for employment development and organizational success. This kind of two-way conversation promotes the giving of ongoing feedback, active listening and interactive communication skills. The supervisor engages the employee in discussions about current job responsibilities, annual performance objectives and future developmental opportunities. The employee also can seek feedback at any time during the review period on specific tasks, general performance and for guidance on new projects or responsibilities. As part of the process, both the employee and the supervisor evaluate the employee's success in meeting mutually agreed upon goals and performance of the day to day activities that help meet the College's mission.

Formal feedback includes

  • Prescheduled meetings
  • Reports
  • Results
  • Annual appraisal discussion

Informal feedback includes

  • Impromptu meetings
  • Personal attention
  • Catching people doing the right things
  • Teachable moments

Meaningful Conversations Process

Each stage is part of a continuous process which takes place throughout the year as the supervisor and the employee focus efforts on achieving goals and developing the employee.

meaningful conversation dialogue chart

Dialogue is a requirement for each stage to be successful and for the process to be "meaningful." This process requires ongoing negotiation and adjustment to changing conditions.

Once a year, a formal record of the dialogue is developed using the forms found on the forms and materials section of the Human Resources Web page. The interactive PDF forms for the Employee Self Evaluation Worksheet and the Supervisor's Performance Appraisal can be completed in stages. Each session can be saved for retrieval at a later time when more information can be added. When the form is completed, the document should be the basis for the Meaningful Conversation performance appraisal discussion that reviews results from the past year and begins the goal setting process for the next performance period.

Meaningful Conversations offers advantages to the Individual and the Organization Individual:

  • Enhances the employees sense of purpose and self worth
  • Recognizes past efforts and successes
  • Uncovers developmental requirements
  • Motivates for meeting new challenges
  • Provides information that employees want to know

Organization:

  • Links jobs to organizational mission
  • Provides for staff development
  • Targets achievement of key objectives
  • Provides focus on important priorities and appropriate utilization of human resources

Monthly Guidelines for Performance Appraisal Process

July

  • Review established goals for "fit" with College´s mission and priority
  • Determine ways to measure results for established goals
  • Develop plans to achieve pre-identified milestones and targets
  • Ensure resources are available as necessary

August

  • Test plans to see if appropriate progress is being made to achieve goals
  • Adjust plans as necessary

September

  • Review and discuss progress and make adjustments
  • Formalize discussion points for performance appraisal
  • Schedule follow-up progress meetings for December and March and formal review in April/May.

October

  • Celebrate progress on results achieved to this point
  • Interpolate progress to ability to achieve end results desired

November

  • Check progress against established milestones and targets
  • Prepare for Quarterly Check-up

December

  • Review and discuss progress and make adjustments
  • Formalize discussion points for performance appraisal

January

  • Celebrate achievements of first half year
  • Confirm commitment to strong finish

February

  • Check progress against established milestones and targets
  • Prepare for Quarterly Check-up

March

  • Review and discuss progress and make adjustments
  • Formalize discussion points for performance appraisal
  • Begin to develop discussion points for formal performance appraisal conference.
  • Set conference time(s) and date(s).

April/May

  • Participate in formalized discussion of individual achievements and goals for next year with supervisors/managers.
  • Forward completed Performance Appraisals Meaningful Conversations instruments to Human Resources
  • Celebrate achievements and communicate results to campus

Meaningful Conversation Training

Meaningful conversation instructor-led training will be available periodically. Information on times and dates of training will be sent to staff members via email.

The meaningful conversation PowerPoint presentations are designed to help Hood College employees and supervisors understand the performance appraisal process and can be used as an ongoing resource.