Synthesis/Summary-Week-8-Performance Appraisal

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Summary of chapter seven: Performance management

In chapter seven, Performance management, Naff, Ricucci, andFreyss in Personnel Management in Government: Politics andProcess, start by pointing out that performance management is anessential element to the achievement of organizational goals.According to Naff et al, performance management involves theestablishment of organizational goals, as well as communicating themto the employees. In addition, the authors point out that performancemanagement comprises of equipping employees with skills and abilitiesto achieve those goals, as well as measuring their performance wherethe performers are rewarded and the low performers are guided tobetter performance. According to Naff et al, goal setting is thefirst step in performance management and it must be set by theemployer together with the employees to ensure that every party issatisfied. It also imperative to set high goals since they lead tobetter performance.

Naff et al, suggest that the individual employees must possess therequired skills and abilities in order to achieve the set goals.However, the authors point out that in the public sector, whereorganizational goals are affected by the political upheavals,individual performance goals are challenging. Employees must believethat they can achieve the goals set for them if they have to performoptimally. Whereas training and development seem costly and timeconsuming, research has indicated that it is critical in ensuringthat employees have the required skills and abilities to achieve theorganizational goals (Naff et al, 2013). Naff and associates pointout to that the fact that the areas of technology and healthcare areconstantly changing and it is imperative for the employees to be keptup dated on the new inventions and developments through training anddevelopment. Naff and associates has argued that training programsmust be evaluated to ensure that they achieve their set objectives.It is also evident that the authors of this chapter suggest thattraining and development of employees should be an ongoing processand its success can only be assessed through the rate at whichemployees are retained in the agency or organization.

Naff and associates point out that performance appraisal is anothersignificant component of performance management where the managersand the supervisors assess the work that has been done by their.Performance appraisals take place every year and the supervisors givefeedback in regard to the performance of the employees. Naff et al,have pointed out that performance appraisal has been regarded as anexpensive affair and supervisors have also been unable to produceobjective reports that would ensure that the process produces desiredresults. According to Naff et al, performance appraisal is criticalin the establishment of pay-for-performance strategies whereemployees are paid according to their performance. The authors havesuggested that performance appraisal is an effective tool in ensuringthat employees are satisfied in their jobs and are well aware withclarity the goals set for their jobs. Performance appraisals havetraditional been written forms of reports that indicate theperformance at each job specification (Naff et al, 2013).

The authors point out that due to the inadequacies of writtenreports by supervisors, there has been new methods of appraisals inthe modern culture. Self-appraisals, peers appraisals, subordinateappraisals and group appraisals are new forms of appraisals that themodern managers are adopting. It is evident that the focus is on thesource of the appraisal report or who writes the report. There hasbeen a change of the writer of report due to the lack of objectivitythat the supervisors have shown in past appraisals. Naff andassociates have pointed out that there has been new approaches toperformance appraisals where employees as assessed for theircompetencies, which they have achieve over a period of one. Theseapproaches, according to the authors are called competency-basedapproaches to performance appraisals. Naff et al, suggests that theseapproaches are applied where the results of an employee’s‘performance are out of his or her control. They are meant toensure that employees develop efficiently according to the demands oftheir jobs. Naff and associates have also pointed out to the aspectof payment for performance, which is a new model as opposed to thepay for merit, which has traditionally been in use.

Along this chapter towards the end, Naff and associates argue thatemployee engagement is critical for ensuring optimal performance.This is the relationship that the employee develops with his job,workplace environment and the employer. According to Naff et al,employee engagement enables employees to find meaning in their workand enjoy what they do. Lastly, the authors suggest that employeeswho fail to perform in their respective positions in the publicsector should be disciplined constantly until they improve theirperformance. Contrary to popular belief, it is not impossible orextremely difficult to fire an employee in the public sector if duelegal procedures are followed (Naff et al, 2013).

Summary of chapter 11: performance appraisal

In chapter eleven, performance appraisal, by Klingner,Nalbandian and E Llorens, in Public Personnel Management: Contextsand Strategies, Sixth Edition start by pointing out that performanceappraisal, as opposed to position management has proved to be achallenge to a vast majority of human resources. According toKlingner et al, performance appraisal is an aspect that shouldprovide employees with the impetus to increase their productivity.The authors continue to argue that whereas the process of performanceappraisal is meant to increase employee performance and satisfaction,more often than not, it has been viewed as costly and a waste of timeand its achievements have been minimal. The process of performanceappraisal has led to more employee-employer conflicts, than it hasled to the intended purpose of improving performance.

Klingner et al, has pointed out that performance appraisal seeks toachieve various objective. To start with, the authors suggest thatperformance appraisal is aimed at ensuring that employees aremotivated to work harder and improve their performance. Secondly,performance appraisal seeks to communicate the organizational goalsto the individual employees (Mor-Barak, 2013). It is also evidentthat the purpose of performance appraisal is to ensure that theorganizational rewards such as salary increments and promotions aredistributed equally and fairly to the best performing employees(Klingner et al, 2010). The civil service personnel systems are saidto be based on merit where employees are rewarded according to theirperformance and competencies. The authors also point out thatcollective bargaining personnel systems are opposed to the systemwhere employees are rewarded for their performance and performanceappraisal.

Klingner et al, also point out that the personnel management of anagency cannot carry out performance appraisals for employees workingfor contractors. However, according to the authors, the contractorshould carry performance appraisals for their employees theirperformance affects the overall performance of the contractor. Parttime or temporary employees’ performance appraisal has been citedas being irrelevant. However, according to Klingner et al,performance appraisals should be carried out of volunteer employeesto assess their performance. Klingner et al, have pointed out tovarious aspects and trends that have performance appraisalsdifficult. For instance, the authors have pointed to the aspect ofcontracting that has made difficult and irrelevant to carry outindividual performance appraisals. In addition, the authors have alsosuggested that the nature of work may affect the performanceappraisal processes. They also note that part-time employees andtemporary employees are unnecessary to appraise to the employers.

According to Klingner et al, the process of appraisal in the civilservice system has been regarded as irrelevant. This is because theprocess revolves around the desire by supervisors to control theemployees, employees’ rights and the will to respond and react tothe political pressures (Klingner et al, 2010). The authors point outto two main criteria through which employees can be evaluated fororganizational rewards such as promotions and salary increments. Theyare the person-based and the performance based where employees areevaluated in comparison to other employees and based on set standardsof performance respectively.

Persona commentary

In chapter seven of Naff et al, it was extremely clear to me of theprocess of performance management. The chapter has clearly outlinedall the steps and has sufficiently explained each and every step. Inparticular, the chapter was extremely clear on the goals settingstep, as well as the training and development step. Performanceappraisal was also clear discussed, as well as the rewards that goodperforming employees expect. However, the chapter failed to clearindicate the actions that are taken against non-performing employees.

In Summary of chapter 11: performance appraisal by Klingner et al,the various methods of performance appraisal in the civil servicesystem have been identified and clearly discussed. It was insightfuland it made me note that the appraisal process is not appreciated byboth the employers and the employees. It was also clear of thevarious factors that affect the process of performance appraisal. Thechapter was also insightful in providing information in regard to thevarious objectives of performance appraisals. However, it was notextremely clear to me why the employers in the civil service systemfail to appreciate the importance of performance appraisal.


Naff, K.C., Ricucci, N., &amp Freyss, S.F. (2013). PersonnelManagement in Government: Politics and Process (7th Edition).Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Klingner, D.E, Nalbandian, J., and Llorens, J. (2010). PublicPersonnel Management: Contexts and Strategies (6th Edition). NewYork: Longman/Pearson

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Mor-Barak, M. E. (2013). Managing diversity: Toward a globallyinclusive workplace.