Classic:  How to Give Good Feedback, Beyond Appraisal | Talent and Performance Development | Scoop.it

"...Human nature hasn't changed - few of us enjoy hearing about our shortcomings, and few of our bosses and colleagues look forward to describing them.


Part of the problem is that work itself has changed - it's more team- oriented, less individualistic. The tougher it is to measure individual performance, the tougher it is to evaluate it."

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The tougher it is to measure individual performance, the tougher it is to evaluate it."

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Parkview Medical Center in Pueblo, Colorado ...explor[ed] how best to modify the hospital's existing checklist-based reviews: Which ratings made the most sense? Which scoring systems worked best? But no amount of tinkering satisfied Parkview's leaders.


Dorothy Gill, vice president of human resources, and a team of her colleagues explained their dilemma to the CEO: "He said, 'If there isn't a better way to do reviews, let's just stop doing them.' So we did. 


Gill and her colleagues eventually came up with an idea. It's called APOP, for Annual Piece of Paper. The most valuable kinds of feedback, they concluded, are the daily interactions between leaders and their people - interactions that can't be captured on paper.


The hospital still requires that managers do annual reviews. But instead of being top-down appraisals, the reviews are bottom-up requests for assistance: What can the leader do to make the employee's job easier? What gets in the way of accomplishing the job?


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There are no scores, no written goals for the next year....  the...process "takes performance reviews and turns them upside down." 

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And the medium for those reviews is conversation, not written evaluation. There is a form - the APOP. But its only role is to confirm that the conversations took place. There are no scores, no written goals for the next year.


It's literally a piece of paper, signed by the employee and the director, that records the date, place, and agenda of the meeting. The APOP process "takes performance reviews and turns them upside down," Gill says. "Directors don't tell employees how they're doing. They ask open-ended questions to see what will help employees do a better job."


photo: by felipe.cabrera, Flickr CC