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How to Create an Effective Quarterly Performance Review

Isabelle Nicole
March 26, 2024
 min read
How to Create an Effective Quarterly Performance ReviewHow to Create an Effective Quarterly Performance Review
Table of Contents

We’ve reached the end of the quarter, which means you’re probably getting ready for your quarterly performance review. 

If you’re not on a quarterly performance review cycle, now is the perfect time to start! We already know that feedback is invaluable when motivating employees, and establishing a quarterly review cycle gives your direct reports a chance to showcase their hard work – or to get on the right track if internal goals have shifted (which they tend to do!).

Performance reviews are like a pit stop during a race. You refuel, check the map, stretch your legs. It’s a chance to pause, address any bumps in the road, and recalibrate your journey. 

Here are a few ways you can make your performance reviews more engaging, encouraging, and transparent. You can also take these tips outside the actual meeting itself to implement a culture of regular feedback into your organization. 

What is a quarterly performance review? 

Performance reviews are a common approach for providing feedback and serve as a formal check-in point to review yearly goals or benchmarks. Quarterly Performance Reviews happen at the end of each financial quarter. 

The frequency of performance reviews can vary for each company or team – usually Annual Performance Reviews are linked to salary reviews or eligibility for promotions and may involve a larger team survey or written self-assessment. However your team does performance management, it’s important to document feedback throughout the year so you can thoroughly advocate for your team. 

A quarterly performance review is a commitment to continuous improvement and follow-through for both leadership and employees. They can also include recognition, clarification, criticism, concerns, and professional development. 

4 Ways to create a more effective quarterly performance review

Elevate your review with engaging slides

Creating a dedicated deck for the employee performance review serves as a great sharing tool for you and your direct report, but also works as perfect documentation to your higher-ups when fighting for that employee’s promotion.’s Performance Review template includes performance evaluation and performance improvement plan slides to easily document and showcase learnings and steps forward. This customizable template also has all the performance review basics like communication hits and misses, job performance, and overall feedback. 

With our template, you can also be more efficient when writing multiple reviews. It takes on the heavy lifting of design, so you can focus more effectively on communicating feedback. 

Navigating goal setting and performance metrics

Have you ever had KPIs set for you that made you think…where on Earth did those numbers come from? 

Explore strategies for setting clear and achievable goals that align with your direct report, company objectives, and industry standards. Yes, it would be great to have a 10x conversion – but if you have a channel that improves 20% a year, it doesn’t make sense to have a goal that’s completely out of reach. You want to make sure your employee always feels motivated and challenged - not completely out of water. 

On the flip side, if your employee is extremely ahead of track - you can increase your goals or create a “stretch goal” for the next quarter

Mastering the art of constructive feedback

Earlier, we said performance reviews may contain criticism. And it might, if your manager isn’t trained in providing valuable insights in the form of constructive feedback. 

Feedback should be specific and actionable. Statements like “good job” or “you need to do better” lack clarity and can be demotivating. How can they be better? What led you to think they did a job well done? 

The Sandwich technique involves sandwiching constructive criticism between positive feedback. For example; 

Sarah, I want to acknowledge the outstanding results you’ve achieved this quarter. Your ability to consistently exceed sales targets and revenue goals is impressive. I have identified a few instances where your follow-up with clients could be more proactive. Cultivating stronger relationships will help us secure repeat business when it comes to renewal. I’m confident in your ability to do this because of your dedication and hard work, which does not go unnoticed. 

Don’t limit feedback to a quarterly thing

According to a recent report by Lattice, 38% of respondents ranked performance management as a top priority – higher than ever. 

Managers and leadership can set the tone by implementing frequent feedback and recognition throughout the quarter. Explore with your team how more frequent feedback builds a culture of continuous improvement. Learn to inspire and motivate toward ongoing development, and build a growth-oriented work environment. 

Isabelle Nicole

Isabelle Nicole

Isabelle is a freelance content writer and filmmaker based in Los Angeles.