Preparing a direct & delivering a review score I was over-ridden on.
BLUF: How do I prepare for and deliver a review when I don't agree with the score? (The policy is to spread the scores out across a bell curve. My score is being over-ridden by the company.) I want to restate that the behavior we had already talked about was wrong and what the direct needs to do going forward. But I think the score is way, way too harsh! I don't know what to say if directly asked about the score.
If the direct challenges me on how I could overlook all the great technical work (and he does some great things) for this, I'm not sure what I can say. I think it is way too harsh. BUT I have to back up the company and my name is the one on the review! My only thought is to refocus discussion on the issues and the behavior I require - not the score.
I've told my staff about the bell curve policy so that isn't a surprise. I had given him a sub-acceptable score on quarterly reviews and have been messaging that. But my score is being lowered to the lowest level possible.
I've been told by my manager that it will be impossible to change their minds because they need a certain percentage at that lowest level. Even trying to argue for him will get me in serious trouble. This direct angered some people above and is now going to pay for it - big time! BUT I can't say that!
I also think I'm going to have to start laying the ground work for this now. That is going to seem odd because it is something that is months old and I've already done 2 quarterly reviews with scores that are higher than the final will be. But I've got to do something to let it not be a surprise to him.