How Do You Evaluate Contributions to Your Workplace Team?

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This week, in his always excellent Three Star Leadership blog, management guru Wally Bock said this:

When you review performance you should review both team and team member performance. Pay attention to how team members work together and support each other. Be alert for situations where one person pulls the others down or lifts them up.”

Wally couldn’t be more correct in the importance of evaluating contribution to the team. The catch is this: how do you do that effectively? How do you go beyond the anecdotal or the few occasions you may have witnessed (both positive and negative) to accurately capture how well someone truly contributes to (or detracts from) the team’s success?

A positive way to do reviews

You need a positive, transparent way that doesn’t induce fear of repercussions like many 360-degree review mechanisms do. You need to crowdsource performance evaluations through strategic, social recognition.

How does that work?

When you have a strong technology backbone, it’s really quite simple. Structure a strategic recognition program that encourages anyone to recognize anyone else for living your core values. Be sure the system includes clear hierarchies so you can track and view in an easy infographic style who on your team has been recognized by those on your team as well as those outside your team.

Important factors to focus on

Now you know several important factors with the data to back it up:

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  1. Who is influential within your team?
  2. Who is influential from your team across the entire organization?
  3. Who lives particular core values in their daily work versus those who do not?

With this data easily to hand, you can have much more informed and impactful team performance evaluations throughout the year to help everyone better live your values and support the team’s success (and the company’s as well).

Do you evaluate team performance and contribution as well as individual performance?

You can find more from Derek Irvine on his Recognize This! blog.

Derek Irvine is one of the world’s foremost experts on employee recognition and engagement, helping business leaders set a higher vision and ambition for their company culture. As the Vice President of Client Strategy and Consulting at Globoforce, Derek helps clients — including some of world’s most admired companies such as Proctor and Gamble, Intuit, KPMG, and Thomson Reuters — leverage recognition strategies and best practices to better manage company culture, elevate employee engagement, increase retention, and improve the bottom line. He's also a renowned speaker and co-author of Winning with a Culture of Recognition. Contact him at


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