Appraisal Process


Theory Practice
  • Feedback is integral to the culture and management style.
  • Formal appraisal is a natural part of the relationship between boss and employee.
  • It is a two-way process.
  • Documentation supports the process and assists review and performance management.
  • Appraisal is forward-looking.
  • Appraisal allows a closer link between business needs and individual contribution.
  • The forms and ritual become central to the process.
  • Formal appraisal is seen as a chore which is imposed.
  • It is driven by the manager with little shared ownership.
  • Documentation often strangles the process – if it is ever completed.
  • Still an emphasis on review of past.
  • Appraisal tends to take a narrow view of an individual’s contribution.


SKILLS supported by FORMS
FUTURE as well as PAST
THEORY Y rather than THEORY X
Management styles
Theory X Theory Y
  • People dislike work.
  • They must be controlled coerced and threatened to achieve organisational objectives.
  • they prefer to be directed, dislike responsibility, have little ambition and value security above all.
  • Work is as natural as rest or play.
  • People are self-directed towards goals to which they are comitted.
  • They not only accept but sek responsibility.
  • They can be imaginative and ingenious in the solution of organisational problems and their intellectual abilities are typically only partially utilised.


  • Clarify purpose
  • Establish rapport
  • Give positive feedback early
  • Understand past before planning future
  • Recap key points
  • Summarise and agree understanding

Building rapport

  • Location
  • Room layout
  • Pace
  • Body language


  • Do your preparation
  • Avoid interruptions and disttractions
  • Allow time to relax
  • Maintain eye contact
  • Ask one question at a time – make it easy on both of you
  • Be prepared to sit out silences
  • Beware of filtering out bad news
  • Take appropriate notes

Questions to avoid

CLOSED (except to clarify facts) “Is everything OK then?”
Beware the closed question trap – they only provide yes/no answers
LEADING “I enjoyed that project – I presume you did too?”
Gives the employee the answer you want – don’t waste your time asking it!
MULTIPLE “Did you achieve that task on time or were the resources not available and what about total costs?”
Where do I start? These questions only serve to confuse.

The questioning funnel

  • Open
  • Probe
  • Close
  • Recap

Giving praise

  • A motivational tool
  • More powerful when specific – examples give credibility
  • Give some praise early
  • Sincerity is important
  • Don’t underestimate the contribution of longer serving staff

Catch them doing something right

Dealing with substandard performance

  • Find simple factual reasons
    eg: Disorganised? Not trained? Wrong priorities? Inexperience?
  • Tackle it in terms of control rather than blame

Improving performance and solving problems


“How do we solve it?” NOT “Whose fault is it?”

More on Appraisal, PDP’s and PPDP’s and appraisal

Source: Simon Parker, CPCR.


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