Performance reviews and ongoing development are are probably more important for people managers than individuals contributors. After all, a poor leader can bring down the performance of an entire segment within an organization. There’s a lot more downside if managers are not performing at their fullest potential.

Performance reviews for leadership roles are a critical aspect of the management and development. These evaluations provide an opportunity for leaders to reflect on their performance and set goals for improvement, as well as for their supervisors to provide feedback and support. Effective performance reviews can help leaders grow and improve in their roles, ultimately contributing to the success of the organization.

All that being said, here are some examples of feedback you could include in an employee appraisal for a team lead, manager, or supervisor.

Positive Performance Review Phrases for Leadership Roles

  • You make it a point to put the needs of others before your own. This shows just how effective you are as a leader, as you choose to help others develop into their best versions in the workplace. Excellent work.
  • You are a natural born leader. Helping others become better at their work while also listening to their needs comes naturally to you. Amazing job!
  • I think the best leader leads by example, and you do just that. People in the office want to follow in your footsteps.
  • You’re the type of person who recognizes when their staff are doing a good job and rewards them for it.
  • I see that you are doing fantastic work when it comes to creating a team-oriented work environment.
  • I’m always impressed by the feedback we get from subordinates about your work. You consistently inspire employees to hit new goals and have one of the best employee retention rates in company history.
  • One of your best qualities is that you know how to create mutual trust amongst your team through integrity and transparency. You aren’t just helping people at work, you’re making them better overall people. 

You take it upon yourself to go and ask your team members if they needed help on certain tasks, which exemplifies outstanding leadership.

  • You were put in a leadership position because we saw the qualities of such in you. In the short time that has passed since then, you have exceeded our expectations. I look forward to seeing you grow and continue being promoted within the company to bigger roles. 
  • You have critical thinking and reasoning skills readily to solve problems and help others, which makes you an excellent leader. I can tell you were trained at one of the top universities in the country. 
  • You always participate whenever there’s a decision-making process, and you’re never one to shy about presenting fantastic ideas.
  • You have established excellent rapport with your peers, enabling you to better help them during difficult situations. You are not only a manager, but a trusted advisor among staff. 
  • Whenever conflicts arise, you always have an open mind when you listen to both sides. This allows you to help resolve conflicts swiftly and fairly. 
  • You do a fantastic job at implementing a wide range of varied activities that increase the team’s ability to handle challenging projects. This year we exceeded our sales goals. No doubt your efforts motivating the team went a long way to contributing to this goal. 
  • You deal with others with the utmost respect, which makes them feel valued as employees. Keep meeting with employees one on one and identifying problems that you can solve. 

Needs Improvement Performance Review Phrases for Leadership Roles

  • Whenever conflicts arise, you tend to run away from the situation rather than resolve it. You need to step up and become accountable.
  • You focus on your personal needs rather than the needs of your whole team. Remember, your success is dependent on your team. Focus on ways that you can help the team and you will thrive. 
  • We noticed that you don’t have a great deal of understanding when it comes to scheduling, as you have created overlapping schedules causing disruptions in the workplace. I understand the transition to manager is not an easy one. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help and support when needed. You’re not alone. 
  • You must learn about the importance of building teamwork. Instead of taking credit for an idea, acknowledge team members contributions. This will encourage staff to work harder for you. 
  • Oftentimes, you give preferential treatment to certain team members. This makes others feel less valued and lowers overall productivity. Don’t forget to spend time with average contributors to understand their needs and try to lift them up. 
  • You have no initiative when it comes to recognizing and rewarding your team’s efforts and hard work. Next year, please create an incentive program for team members. Recognize the talent you have to work with each day. 
  • Communication is key when it comes to productivity. You need to work on it more if you want to see legitimate progress. The more open communication lines you have the more you can get done. 

While you have demonstrated strong leadership skills in some areas, there are opportunities for improvement in your ability to effectively lead and motivate your team, such as enhancing your delegation skills. Next quarter, try assigning some of the tasks to a senior member of the team. 

  • I’ve noticed that you struggle to delegate tasks effectively to team members, which can lead to a lack of productivity and efficiency. Let’s make this an area of focus for the next two months. 
  • Your communication with the team could be improved, as there have been instances where important information has not been properly conveyed. Make sure to proofread all emails before sending to the team. You can also ask a team member to review for accuracy before distributing to a broader audience. 
  • I’ve observed that you have difficulty managing conflict within the team and finding resolution to problems. I encourage you to book bi-weekly meetings with our brilliant HR manager Diane. Diane will be able to help you navigate this situation in a skillful way. 
  • You could benefit from improving your time management skills, as there have been instances where deadlines have been missed. Communicate to your team the importance of hitting time goals. 
  • I’ve noticed that your team members do not always feel supported by you, which can impact morale and team dynamics. Take the time to meeting with employees about how their work is going. This will make you appear more approachable to staff. 
  • Your leadership style could be more inclusive, as I’ve noticed that some team members do not feel heard or valued in decision-making processes. Make sure to collect ideas for a diverse range of employees with different cultural perspectives, ages, and work experience. 

Self-Evaluation Performance Review Phrases about Leadership

  • I have demonstrated strong leadership skills by effectively managing my team and guiding them towards achieving our goals.
  • I have consistently demonstrated the ability to inspire and motivate my team to perform at their best.
  • I have effectively communicated with my team, fostering an open and collaborative working environment.
  • I have successfully managed conflicts within my team, ensuring that all team members feel heard and valued.
  • I have demonstrated my ability to adapt to new situations and make quick, effective decisions.
  • I have consistently demonstrated my commitment to professional development, both for myself and for my team.
  • I have effectively balanced the needs of my team with the overall goals of the organization.

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  • I have shown my ability to build and maintain strong relationships with colleagues, clients, and other stakeholders.
  • I have demonstrated my ability to effectively delegate tasks and responsibilities to my team members.
  • I have shown my willingness to take on new challenges and lead my team through difficult situations.
  • I have consistently provided clear direction and guidance to my team, helping them to understand their roles and responsibilities.
  • I have demonstrated my ability to identify and develop the strengths of my team members, helping them to grow and succeed.
  • I have shown my ability to effectively manage and prioritize multiple projects and tasks, ensuring that all work is completed on time and to a high standard.
  • I have demonstrated my commitment to upholding the values and mission of the organization in all of my actions and decisions.

Performance Review Phrases for Team Leaders

Writing a performance review.

  • I appreciate your ability to lead and motivate the team. Continue to hone your craft and we’ll promote you as soon as there is an opening. 
  • Your clear communication style helps to keep the team on track. Continue to be candid with your staff. This is a unique ability that not all managers understand. 
  • I have noticed a significant improvement in team morale since you took on the role of team leader. What are your secrets to creating a happier workplace? 

You have consistently demonstrated strong problem-solving skills and a proactive approach to managing challenges. I encourage you to maintain your curious spirit throughout your career. 

  • I have been impressed with your ability to delegate tasks effectively and support team members in their roles. Some new managers have a hard time making the leap from individual contributor to leader. You seemed to naturally understand the nuance. 
  • Your leadership has been instrumental in achieving our team goals and meeting deadlines. Continue to push staff toward hitting the annual goals. 
  • I appreciate your commitment to continuing education and professional development for yourself and the team. By continuing to improve yourself, it makes learning part of the culture of this office. 
  • I have noticed an increase in productivity and efficiency since you became team leader.
  • Your positive attitude and proactive approach to leadership are contagious and have had a positive impact on the team.
  • You have consistently demonstrated the ability to manage conflict and facilitate productive discussions among team members.
  • I have been impressed with your ability to adapt to changing circumstances and find creative solutions to obstacles.
  • Your focus on continuous improvement has helped to drive the team forward and achieve success.
  • I appreciate your willingness to listen to feedback and implement changes to improve team performance.
  • Your commitment to building a positive team culture is evident in your actions and has contributed to a positive working environment for all team members.

Performance Review Phrases for Managers

Let’s talk about struggles and achievements.

  • You have consistently demonstrated strong leadership skills and have effectively managed your team.
  • You have consistently met or exceeded your performance targets, showing a strong commitment to the success of the company.
  • You have shown a willingness to take on additional responsibilities, and have consistently delivered high-quality work.
  • Your ability to communicate and collaborate with others has been a key factor in your success.
  • You have demonstrated excellent problem-solving skills and have effectively addressed challenges as they arise.
  • Your positive attitude and enthusiasm have been contagious, and have contributed to a positive work environment.
  • Your ability to adapt to change and learn new things has been impressive, and has helped drive the success of the team.

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  • You have consistently provided valuable insights and suggestions, and have played a key role in driving innovation within the company.
  • Your attention to detail and commitment to quality have consistently produced impressive results.
  • You have demonstrated a strong work ethic and have consistently demonstrated a commitment to getting the job done.
  • Your ability to prioritize and manage your time effectively has been a major asset to the team.
  • You have shown a willingness to go above and beyond in your work, and have consistently exceeded expectations.
  • Your customer service skills have been outstanding, and have played a key role in driving customer satisfaction.
  • Your leadership and mentorship of your team have been instrumental in their development and success.

How do you evaluate the leadership skills of an employee?

How can you evaluate managers and team leaders?

There are several ways to evaluate the leadership skills of an employee, including:

  • Observing their behavior and interactions with others – Look for examples of the employee taking initiative, motivating others, and effectively managing tasks and people.
  • Seeking feedback from others – Ask the employee’s colleagues, team members, and supervisors for their input on the employee’s leadership skills.
  • Conducting a performance review – Use a structured evaluation process to assess the employee’s leadership skills and provide them with feedback on their strengths and areas for improvement. Ask the manager what areas they would like improve in. 
  • Providing opportunities for leadership – Give the employee opportunities to take on leadership roles and responsibilities, and evaluate their performance in those roles.

Overall, the key is to look for evidence of the employee’s ability to motivate, inspire, and manage others effectively in order to achieve a shared goal. An investment in the soft-skills of leadership usually pays future dividends for a business. 

What qualities should you nurture among managers to improve their leadership skills?

Support your people leaders to create stronger teams.

To improve their leadership skills, managers should nurture a number of key qualities. Some of the most important qualities to develop include:

  • Communication – Effective leaders are able to communicate clearly and concisely, both in one-on-one interactions and in group settings. This means being able to listen actively, ask questions, and provide feedback in a way that is constructive and respectful.
  • Emotional intelligence – Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. It’s an important quality for leaders to have, as it can help them build stronger relationships, resolve conflicts, and create a more positive and productive work environment.
  • Problem-solving – Good leaders are able to identify problems and come up with solutions quickly and effectively. This involves critical thinking, creativity, and the ability to think outside the box.
  • Casting a clear vision – It can be difficult for subordinates to know what tasks to prioritize without a clear vision from their leader. As a leader, you want to make it clear what priorities the team should focus on be it sales, operational efficiency, reducing food waste, customer satisfaction or something else. An identified future vision helps everyone see the direction the company is heading.
  • Adaptability – In today’s fast-paced and constantly changing world, leaders need to be able to adapt to new situations and challenges. This means being open to new ideas, being willing to learn and grow, and being able to adjust their approach as needed.
  • Empowerment – Effective leaders empower their team members by giving them the support, resources, and autonomy they need to do their jobs well. This means providing regular feedback and guidance, but also trusting team members to make their own decisions and take ownership of their work.
  • Collaboration – Great leaders understand that working together is often more effective than working alone. They foster a spirit of collaboration within their team and across the organization, and encourage team members to share ideas, support each other, and work towards a common goal.

I think we can all agree that regular employee appraisals at all levels are important. Even the CEO of the company should be able to take in and process feedback from employees and customers. According to some reports, 85% of employees would consider quitting if they felt that they were given an unfair performance review. So, if you’re a manager or supervisor, always give credit where credit is due.

One final note on performance reviews… Accuracy is important to get value out of this process. You don’t want to write a fluff performance review that’s glowing, unless your feedback is authentic. Staff will pick up on whether or not the employee review process is taken seriously or not so much. Make sure to use the evaluation process as a serious opportunity to identify strengths and weaknesses across all members of the organization to spot areas of opportunity.