I need some suggestions for what approach we might use to implement performance reviews for a small company that has not put in place benchmarks or standards for performance.
Yes, it should never be done BUT:
The company I work for (about 20 employees) has just had a CEO change and the new incumbent has decreed that we will have reviews in January even though there are no baselines or goals set to review against. He does note that it's hard to have reviews when employees don't know what they are being measured against.
The reviews will also include setting performance goals for the following year. The goals bit I can do. The approach to doing a review with no measurement standard is the tricky bit.