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So happy I'm in a small team right now... I used to really hate doing this as an engineering manager. I had to do it for seven engineers plus submit one for my manager and one for a peer. And then I had to coach my team members on their peer reviews. And for each review you had to fill out a paragraph on seven topics some of which sounds similar. And then I have to clarify any major discrepancies between my review and two peer reviews for each engineer. And HR seems to reinvent the forms every year.

That's because they want the goals of the business to align with the goals of your team. Non-technical managers can't read software nor can they talk the talk, so this is the primary way of making sure every employee rows the same direction.

But most engineers treat it as a bullshit exercise and its hard to see how that helps anyone. Maybe we need more technical managers?

Well the result is already pre-determined, typically -- the manager knows how he's going to review the team. So yeah, it is bullshit.

I had a manager who made a standard practice of mentioning things in email in phrasing that seemed obviously intended for me to put into my performance review. It came off as pretty helpful and considerate.

Of course, the same guy fired me with no notice and no severance on the last day of the month (Wednesday), but as the termination documents helpfully pointed out, my health insurance stayed good until the end of the month.

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