The paper 'Issues in Performance Appraisal' is a good example of a Management Assignment. The above question has two components. First, this paper will discuss the problems with Countrywide Credit Union’ s performance appraisal process. To start with, it is important to note that performance appraisal is “ the ongoing process of evaluating employee performance” (Foot & Hook, 2011, p. 285). Ideally, the performance appraisal process involves several steps. The first step is job analysis (i. e. the appraiser gets to understand what the job entails and the performance requirements of each job holder).
Second is the development of standards and measurement methods (the standards and methods need to be communicated to employees). The third involves establishing an informal discipline and coaching in relation to performance appraisal (i. e. jobholders need to know that performance appraisal is an ongoing process and should, therefore, learn to accept it as part of performance management). The final step is preparation by the personal appraiser to conduct the performance appraisal (i. e. the appraiser should understand why performance is assessed, what is assed, and how the assessment is done) (Lunenburg, 2012). Based on the foregoing, it would appear that several steps were missed in the performance appraisal process at Countrywide Credit Union.
To start with, it appears that Kevin (the appraiser) did not fully understand (or did not care) about what the jobs entailed and the performance expectations placed on the jobholders. Arguably, therefore, he had not done a job analysis for the jobs he was appraising the job holders for. Secondly, it appears that Kevin either did not have standards and methods of appraising performances, or he completely ignored them.
This explains why he (Kevin) conducted an informal appraisal with Wayne, his friend, and a somehow formal appraisal with Julia. It would also appear that Kevin had not adequately prepared to conduct the performance appraisal, and as such, may have failed to understand how to conduct the appraisal, why he was appraising the job holders, and the reasons for conducting the appraisals. The latter is specifically evident when he tells Julia that regardless of the rating, everyone will receive a 20% bonus. The second part of the question relates to the manner in which Kevin conducted the appraisal.
It would appear that he (Kevin) was a subject of rating errors, which compromised his accuracy and objectivity. For example, by appraising Wayne during a ‘ boozy lunch at a local golf club’ as indicated in the case study, Kevin became a victim of the inter-relationship effect, which arguably affected his judgment of Wayne’ s performance. The inter-relationship effect is defined as “ a like-dislike relationship between a supervisor and his/her subordinate” (Varma & Shaun, 2007, p. 397). Traditionally, the interpersonal effect is considered as a potent source of bias during a performance appraisal, since it can lead to more favorable ratings even where the performance itself suggests otherwise.
Gauging Wayne’ s work by the performance of his branch for example may indicate that his performance might not be as high as he ranked himself. Another inadequacy in how Kevin conducted the appraisal is evident in the manner in which he handled Julia. It is evident that Julia wanted to think about her performance before rating it; yet, Kevin insisted that he was in a hurry and therefore asked her to pick a rating then.
Although not directly implied, Kevin may have fallen prey to the leniency error, which according to Deb (2009), is adopted by managers who want to avoid confrontation with employees, and who would also want to uphold a ‘ good manager’ image (p. 127).
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