Getting the most from appraisals - from both sides

Written by Graham Yemm

Does your organisation have one of those annual ‘occasions’ that few look forward to:repparttar annual appraisal or performance review? How do you look forward to it? I wonder how people talk about it before and after?

Are appraisals worth doing? If done properly – yes. If done poorly – no!!!

Why have appraisals? When carried out properly they can achieve a number of benefits for all parties. The organisation,repparttar 142489 manager andrepparttar 142490 appraisee can:

  • establish current levels of performance, andrepparttar 142491 organisation benchmark across departments or functions,
  • identify ways of improving performance, individually and collectively,
  • set clear goals forrepparttar 142492 future,
  • assess potential and desire for development,
  • establishrepparttar 142493 appropriate means of motivation,
  • improve communication throughout.
Some ofrepparttar 142494 typical problems that happen to lead to poor appraisals are: - It is an annual process - Nothing has happened withrepparttar 142495 outcome ofrepparttar 142496 last one - There is no on-going feedback or review of progress - Things can change in between, whether it isrepparttar 142497 manager orrepparttar 142498 job! - The process is not taken seriously fromrepparttar 142499 top - The organisational culture viewsrepparttar 142500 whole process as a chore to be endured - Insufficient preparation time or effort - The ‘recency’ effect where onlyrepparttar 142501 previous 6-8 weeks are reviewed - Too much focus onrepparttar 142502 negatives or problems ofrepparttar 142503 year - It is too subjective and too much is based on opinion - It is too time consuming and interferes with day-to-day work - Appraisals are just part ofrepparttar 142504 salary negotiation

When you look at what can be achieved and comparerepparttar 142505 benefits withrepparttar 142506 reasons why they often fail to deliver, you can see that a lot of this is due torepparttar 142507 attitude ofrepparttar 142508 organisation andrepparttar 142509 line managers, starting fromrepparttar 142510 top!

Think about what can happen when appraisals are handled in a constructive manner. They allowrepparttar 142511 organisation and individuals to:

  • learn fromrepparttar 142512 past to improverepparttar 142513 future
  • build on successes and strengths forrepparttar 142514 future
  • recognise individuals’ strengths and abilities
  • identify areas to develop skills and knowledge
  • value individual contribution
  • improve working relationships through clear communication
This does not mean that managers should “duck” difficult issues or things they are not happy with. However, there should be no surprises at an appraisal. Feedback on performance should be given atrepparttar 142515 time – not stored up forrepparttar 142516 appraisal!!! As a manager, if you have concerns, deal with them. Most people want to be given feedback on their performance regularly (and that does not mean annually!!) – even if it is to be told they have to improve.

One challenge in many organisations is to userepparttar 142517 current system effectively. Too many people get caught up in worrying aboutrepparttar 142518 paperwork – whether designing a new set or usingrepparttar 142519 existing. I recall working with one client in developing a good, thorough, process only to be questioned by some directors from their Scandinavian partner about why we were going to so much trouble. They held up a blank sheet of paper and explained that was their idea of all they needed for a productive appraisal!!! They are right. The reality is that a productive appraisal owes more torepparttar 142520 quality ofrepparttar 142521 communication betweenrepparttar 142522 people involved than torepparttar 142523 paperwork! Should appraisals involve salary reviews? This is a quandary with no straightforward answer. When they do, there is a risk thatrepparttar 142524 amount ofrepparttar 142525 rise becomesrepparttar 142526 absolute focus ofrepparttar 142527 discussion and can even be a negotiation. If they don’t, how objective isrepparttar 142528 salary award when it is given? My own view is thatrepparttar 142529 salary review and appraisal can be linked, yet held very separately. There is no reason for not holdingrepparttar 142530 appraisal, setting some goals and even specifying some behavioural change and then using this as a part ofrepparttar 142531 salary discussion. Although there is a risk in havingrepparttar 142532 appraisal and salary combined – it can work, regardless ofrepparttar 142533 gap. After all, shouldn’t salary and raises reflect performance rather than just opinion? If appraisals are carried out well and constructively there should be a fit betweenrepparttar 142534 two.

Coaching can get the boss in shape

Written by Graham Yemm

Who tellsrepparttar boss that they can improve their management or leadership? How do they look at themselves objectively and identify what areas they can improve andrepparttar 142488 benefits of doing so?

These days many people have become more aware ofrepparttar 142489 need to look after their bodies and their health. Not only do many join gyms or start participating in sports regularly – a number are using personal trainers. Why do they choose to do this? Consider top performers inrepparttar 142490 sports world, or areas such as drama and classical music. What do they have in common? The majority haverepparttar 142491 equivalent ofrepparttar 142492 personal trainer (or more than one!). These arerepparttar 142493 people atrepparttar 142494 top of their field and yet they choose to do this. Why?

Some bosses have had formal management and leadership training, and many have not. Regardless, it does not mean that they have not got some areas which would improve with some conditioning, or reconditioning! Yet, asrepparttar 142495 quotation below says, how many will: a) admit to these things, and b) do something about them?

“People will go to a lot of trouble to learn French or Physics or Scuba diving. They haverepparttar 142496 patience to learn to operate a car, but they won’t be bothered learning how to operate themselves” -Newman & Berkowitz

We all knowrepparttar 142497 risks of not keeping ourselves in shape thanks torepparttar 142498 media and countless reports and surveys. How aware are we ofrepparttar 142499 risks to our organisations if we have too many bosses who are out of shape in terms of their own style or skills? The knock-on effect of them continuing to behave inrepparttar 142500 same “out of shape” way can bad forrepparttar 142501 people working around them and forrepparttar 142502 organisation’s health.

Many bosses, whatever their roles or levels, do not like attending training programmes to develop themselves or their skills. Sometimes there are genuine reasons and often there are a range of frequently used excuses. (Too busy being a frequent cop-out – and is often a good symptom ofrepparttar 142503 problems with their management style and capability.) Whether you are “a boss” who recognises this, or someone who is interested in ways to influence bosses to develop themselves, you might need to look at other options!

The last few years have seen a massive growth in “coaching”, whether life-coaching, corporate coaching or executive coaching or other labels. This does tell us one thing, there is a market there for coaches! Also, that more people think that they can benefit from working with a coach. It is not onlyrepparttar 142504 likes of Tim Henman and Tiger Woods who think like this!

Withinrepparttar 142505 corporate world, coaching is a very effective way of developing people. Although a significant amount of coaching occurs with board level executives, it is being used increasingly for other levels withinrepparttar 142506 organisation. There is a limited amount of data aboutrepparttar 142507 return on investment from coaching though it is growing. Early studies can demonstrate an ROI of 6 TIMESrepparttar 142508 investment – and that is inrepparttar 142509 measurable outcomes, notrepparttar 142510 intangible gains torepparttar 142511 organisation! This is for coaching used in isolation. One organisation measured improvements after training courses and found that they got around 22% improvement in productivity. When this was supported by coachingrepparttar 142512 improvement was 88%!! Yes, coaching pays dividends!

So, what can a coach do to helprepparttar 142513 boss get in shape? We believe that there are three key steps to effective coaching interactions and they have some similarities with signing up torepparttar 142514 gym and a personal trainer. (These form a process we refer to as “Coherent Coaching” shown in Fig.1.)

First things first – a diagnosis phase. This is critical torepparttar 142515 overall success ofrepparttar 142516 project. What isrepparttar 142517 reason for thinking thatrepparttar 142518 boss needs to get in shape? (The fitness assessment?) The clearer you can be aboutrepparttar 142519 areas to be addressed,repparttar 142520 existing situation and problems,repparttar 142521 impact on others inrepparttar 142522 organisation,repparttar 142523 easier it will be to generate specific aims. This stage can look atrepparttar 142524 boss in terms ofrepparttar 142525 organisational context and why coaching is being considered, and their personal style and behaviours. Not that these have to be mutually exclusive!

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