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'That was it the whole way through him going down the list telling me what I'd done wrong. And I just didn't feel I could say anything about what I was feeling.' This quote from Tony after his appraisal is probably only too familiar to many of us. An interview like this, that brings back memories of going to see the head at school, is likely to do more harm than good for both the person being appraised and the appraiser and for the organisation in terms of performance, productivity and morale.

This new version concentrates on the equal responsibility of both to get the best out of their meeting and the appraisal process.

By emphasising the importance of both parties, the programme highlights several do's and don'ts:

  • Prepare: Arrange when and where to meet, allowing time for both to review the past year and think about what you want to discuss.
  • Listen and ask questions: To ensure genuine two way communication, you must make sure you get the other person's point of view, understand their feelings, and show you're genuinely interested in them and what they have to say.
  • Concentrate on performance not personality: Look at what's been achieved or not. Avoid personality issues.
  • Be specific about successes and failures: Always get to the point whether it is positive or not, otherwise it is impossible to have a meaningful or constructive discussion.
  • Agree objectives: Targets have to be specific and measurable, tough but achievable, and most important, agreed.
  • Don't impose your ideas: You are two people trying to find the best course of action, and when you are the appraiser you are trying to get the other person to develop to their full potential.
  • Don't be destructive: Criticism for its own sake is counter productive.
  • Follow up any issues: Monitor progress and deal with issues as they arise. Be prepared to revise targets if necessary, and review training requirements. AND MOST IMPORTANTLY...
  • Use the past to shape the future: The point of appraisal is not simply to rake over the past, but to use what you learn from it to improve the future, both in terms of organisational performance and individual development.
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Course Guide, Quick Guide and 8 OHPs.


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Appraisal Interview course guide
Appraisal Interview quick guide
Appraisal Interview
Appraisee Notes

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