Monday, 8 June 2015

Avoiding appraisal surprises

It is common for teams to complain of ambiguity in the appraisal process, while leadership blames naivety and unrealistic expectations of teams at the appraisal desk. The struggle and confrontation  goes on and organizations suffer the consequences in terms of attrition, disengagement and disgruntled teams, causing both tactical and strategic damage to the cultural hygiene and performance. Research indicates over 70% Executives and entrepreneurs strongly feel that it is the most stressful time of the year (Industrial Psychology Journal, 2012).


Leaders, whether Executives or Entrepreneurs, need to be sensitive to the idea of consistent coaching at work, as the ingrained, unsaid skillset that they need to deliver as a mandatory hygiene factor. It is common to see most leaders doing what they like, or what excites/occupy them the most. Be it inefficient duplication, micro management, or their inability to perform tasks as good as people meant for it. Obsession (often confused with passion) tends to occupy routines, functions and therefore results. It is therefore vital to understand leadership has to consistently build on to the coaching effort, and, in fact, large part of their time needs to be invested in this area. Here are five critical functions leaders need to adhere to;


Development: Developing is about transferring skills and experiences, and not hoarding information that never gets shared for organizational benefit. It’s about creation of learning opportunities irrespective of method, conceptual or experiential. It is about any value addition that helps teams to produce an alpha.


Relationships: Subconsciously, we build, sustain and fortify relationships. Nearly 80% of time is invested on relationships. This ensures fearless culture and people do not hesitate to raise hand when they need help or support. It is an effort to build transparent and mutually respectable behavioural norms, and eventually a bridge.


Direction: This is about clarifying without ambiguity, on, where is the business or the team goal headed, what is how teams can contribute, time and measurable milestones in the journey, how would results look like, and what are the acceptable behaviours expected from the teams. These need to be reinforced repeatedly.


Accountability: Once the norms are set, it is important to create opportunities and willingness to share and accept honest, constructive feedback. Without accountability, it is likely that performance would drift.


Results: The effort has to end in a result and more often than not, the planned or course corrected result. The attribution of result, appreciation, and, ratings have to follow at appraisal meetings.


This ensures that there is a little room for surprises on either side when it comes to appraisal process as the outcomes become more predictable and certain. Seek help in building managerial coaching competencies? Visit or call +91 9893222222

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