Many of those who are pursuing CFO careers have it easier, because financial departments are considered ''black and white'' careers. In accounting, either you get it right or you get it wrong. For those who hold CEO jobs, you have a multitude of talent doing a multitude of jobs, so it is harder to get those in ''gray'' area jobs to conform to a certain standard, and in reality, it doesn't work for all companies.
Because creativity and new ideas are born every day by those who aren't conformists, many of those in CEO jobs have the most difficulty in effective performance reviews. The most effective performance reviews are those that don't try to soften a negative blow and encourage the employee to ''toot their own horn'' to remind you of ones who do. The fact of the matter is that many CEO jobs and CFO jobs are very tedious ones that involve a lot of people.
Somebody once said that the sign of a good CEO or CFO is the reference that their employees give them. Would your employees think that you are fair and display signs of leadership or would they think you are biased and easy to back down when confronted? An effective performance review will let the employee know what is expected and how well they are doing at meeting those expectations. Many of those in CFO careers say that clear cut guidelines are the best, with no gray areas, but many CEO's disagree.
Whatever styles of effective performance reviews you use, they should be geared to your specific company, with measurable goals and incentives for reaching them. They should not be set on another company with a different culture or management style than you have. You need to analyze what you expect and then make it very clear to your employees, if you hope to have an effective performance review.
Instead of it becoming a mud-slinging contest, it should be used for constructive means of communication to improve the employees, and in the process, make the CEO or CFO a more effective leader. Some management members look at performance evaluations as a means of evaluating their own management and leadership skills, and you should too.
The fact of the matter is that the team is led by the head of the department or the company. If the goals and procedures are not laid out in a way that employees understand, then that is the fault of the leader, and it makes it hard to follow a lead that is unclear. Be a clear leader who gives clear instruction and you will find that you have a team that knows which direction to go, even if they are given creative freedom. Effective performance reviews can be a two-sided learning tool and can make management more effective, when it comes to profitability.