Appraisal creates an opportunity for staff and employer to get feedback from each other.
One of the places I worked earlier in my career is this really great advertising agency. I say ‘really great’ because it had all kinds of perks for its employees- car and house loan options, a bespoke work station, all sorts of training options (local and international), and probably the best set of co-workers anyone could ever hope for.
With all the perks, the best part as far as I was concerned was the appraisal.
The company had appraisals for their staff every quarter. The implication of this for the staff was that you were in line to get a raise at least once a year. You should have seen the excitement appraisal time gendered among the staff because appraisal time meant there was the possibility of getting a raise or being promoted. I don’t know of any other company; advertising or otherwise that does that. Not to say there aren’t; I just don’t know of any.
Appraisal, as far as this context is concerned, is the evaluation of a staff’s performance within a stipulated period of time. ‘Performance’ in relation to responsibilities and capabilities. It is how the management finds out if a member of staff is due for a raise or promotion.
On the flip side, it is how management finds out if a staff member has been slacking in his duties. It is the place management and staff gets to discuss one-on-one. If there are issues, management raises the same with the staff in a bid to find out what the issues are and what can be done to resolve them.
In spite of the obvious importance/significance of appraisal, it is dismal to find just how many companies have no idea what it is, talk more of doing anything relating to it for their staff. It is sad, that when it comes to the negative aspects, some organizations just send staff members a memo notifying such staff about his low performance and then giving the same a warning. If performance is not improved, the staff member is just fired; thereby costing company an otherwise valuable asset. Also, the company loses an opportunity to further improve employee/employer relationship.
Allow me to share another experience in one of my ex-workplace that reinforces the need for regular appraisal in every workplace – no matter how small. There are these Monday meeting rituals. Without that meeting, the week cannot begin. One Monday, one of the staff who had issues with his immediate boss interrupted the meeting with an outburst. Obviously, there had been some friction between them which he has been holding in because he had not had the avenue to express himself properly. That Monday, he just couldn’t take it anymore. In the middle of the meeting, he suddenly started shouting, ranting, and screaming. Before long, this married man started to cry.
That’s right. He burst into tears. Such was the level of frustration he had been holding in.
The issue was resolved eventually, but I like to think that it wouldn’t have gotten to that extent if there were opportunities for employees to properly express themselves. Even the other members of staff would have been saved the embarrassment of watching their friend and colleague lose it like that.
Let’s imagine a perfect scenario: he had the opportunity for a closed-door session with management and is able to air his grievances. He is able to sit and discuss civilly with his immediate boss. I am sure that things definitely wouldn’t have turned out the way they did.
There’s also the issue that, in some industries staff members are fired without warning or notice. This particularly happens, more often than not in one-man businesses/entrepreneurial environments. Appraisals give staff the opportunity to see exactly what they are doing wrong, where they might be missing it, and the chance to adjust and correct the concerns raised by management.
Apart from focusing on employees, it’s also the chance for the employer to get feedback from staff, though how many employers would actually make any use of the information remains to be seen. But a stiff-necked company with human beings and not robots in its employ needs to listen to employees, after all, there is a reason they work for the company.
As much, as staff and staff performance need constant scrutiny and evaluation, the same goes for employers – and it goes beyond the kind of scrutiny an auditing firm provides. The reality is, a company is built on the backbone of its employees. Because you’re only as strong as your team. You should also evaluate yourself as much and as constantly as you do your workers. Companies too, need to understand that an employee can as well fire a company. Lack of appraisal may result in a high ratio of labor turnover for the company.
Appraisal; as most everything else, goes both ways.
Let’s hear your thoughts in the comment.
Let’s create visibility for your brand and put your business on world map. Contact us today to make your brand the preferred choice for our audience of entrepreneurs and business leaders.
Photo Credit: Entrepreneurs.ng