Or – Are all the current new ways just revamped old ways?
26 years ago it was 1991, I was 16 years old, the UK was in recession, unemployment was at its highest since 1988 and the Institute of Personnel Management (one of the institutes that would later become the CIPD) released a book called “The Handbook of Performance Management”
Here it is
It was given to me by the Employee Relations director of Tesco when I first was appointed into his team.
It is interesting that at the moment there is a HR revolution going on around Performance Management, with some notable companies waving the banner of removing the annual appraisals and this coupled with some wonderful headlines in the trade press has caused a bit of knee trembling and opinion in equal measure.
But is it new?
Below are some (paraphrased) quotes from a 26 year old book on Performance Management:
Is Appraisal really necessary?
Why did Anne Roe (1952) call her survey of appraisal systems in British Organisations “The Reluctant Appraiser”
Companies carry out a major overhaul of their appraisal system on average every 3 years
If only all managers gave adequate time and effort each month, week, day on feedback then would annual appraisal schemes really be needed?
They are needed to ensure that Managers who wouldn’t normally give feedback do so in a structured manner
The book goes on with some insight into HR professionals at the time and way before:
In 1970 ( Yes 1970) The Personnel Director at British Steel said “We do not call them appraisals, we find that this implies we are looking back and dissecting the past. We want our emphasis to be constructive, developmental and forward looking”
I love that before I was born people were having the same debate that we are having now.
Later in the book in the Chapter “The Feedback Loop” the IPM state that only by closing the loop can a business integrate the HR Strategy with the Business Strategy – and therefore be respected by managers who will now see the purpose of performance management.
Its all about People
So the world has changed massively in the past few decades, industries have come into being, industries have become extinct and the IPM became the CIPD.
But what didn’t change is people, oh they changed their styles, they changed their views but at the core the employee base is still people who are driven to work by very similar factors now as in 1991.
So are we just doomed to repeat the past like this?
No, the concept often isn’t wrong it just needs to be refreshed to make it relevant with today’s people, today’s technology and with your business culture, direction and goals – remember just because another organisation changes something it doesn’t mean that you have to or that it would be right for you.
So lets hear it for
PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT 2 – THE GRITTY REBOOT
This blog was written by Nick Court
Or contact Nick directly on firstname.lastname@example.org
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