Most fire departments are still doing regular performance reviews, and a few of them may still be happy with the process. However, many departments are clearly not. Some fire departments have even gone so far as to eliminate the performance review process altogether.
What’s wrong with the way many fire departments do performance evaluations? And how can the process be improved as to be truly meaningful and valuable for those who use it?
When I became a firefighter, decades ago, the performance review process worked like this: Every six months or so, someone in a position of authority would fill out a form which rated individual department members on different characteristics on a scale of one to 10.