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The purpose of this paper is to compare four different employee activities, namely developmental appraisal, coaching, 360 degree feedback and development centres, offering…
The purpose of this paper is to compare four different employee activities, namely developmental appraisal, coaching, 360 degree feedback and development centres, offering a comparative framework and an integration of existing research evidence.
The paper proposes a unifying classification which combines existing dimensions derived from the literature, such as the degree of formality, with further differences or communalities such as the degree of simulation, ownership of data and frequency of occurrence. This leads to a review of the pertinent literature and research evidence for each of the four activities discussed, with particular reference to long‐term outcomes, their social context as well as individual motivation.
The literature review did not produce equivocal evidence for the effectiveness of any of the four activities. Ratings in appraisals are flawed, whereas their developmental aspect appears dependent on the communication between managers and their charges. Also, there is little evidence on what happens as a result of appraisal interviews in the context of the manager‐employee relationship, and how organizations could best optimize this activity to aid long‐term individual and organizational development.
It is proposed that this classification framework could guide both the implementation and evaluation of diverse activities beyond those reviewed here. This framework may prove effective in making explicit and thus addressing the potentially conflicting expectations for prevalent activities from different parties involved. It is proposed that certain aspects of employee development, such as the employer‐manager relationship may be more suited to investigation through qualitative paradigms, but that ultimately more evidence is needed for long‐term outcomes at different levels (e.g. the individual and the organization).
The paper may help understanding of when, and under what conditions, which particular types of development activities are best suited to meet both individual and organizational requirements.
Describes an ongoing research project investigating how human resource strategies are conceived, designed and implemented in organizations as perceived by the managers involved. Data has been gathered using questionnaires completed by 723 managers studying the Open University MBA, over a five‐year period. The evidence shows most HR changes are organization wide and are intended to enhance organizational performance and support the achievement of primary business objectives. Whereas there is clear board level involvement at the initiation and planning stages, the responsibility for implementation is unclear. This absence of clarity, together with the citing of poor communications as the main reason for the failure of change initiatives, raises a number of questions about leadership, vision and direction, which are considered. The evaluation of the initiative is shown to be a difficult area, often involving inappropriate criteria and is perceived as having few links with the business strategy. From the perspective of their managers, it appears that organizations are still not effective in managing HR change and continue to make the same mistakes, despite the theories and prescription available in the literature.
Empowerment has been described as providing local management with a clear framework within which to manage, with the maximum devolution of responsibility and with the…
Empowerment has been described as providing local management with a clear framework within which to manage, with the maximum devolution of responsibility and with the skills and confidence to accept it. Despite their wide adoption there is a dearth of research which elevates the voice of those on the receiving‐end of such empowering strategies, especially as applied in public sector organisations. This paper examines the impact of a five‐year empowerment programme, as perceived by the managers and staff within a “Next Steps” agency. Based on individual and group interviews with 75 staff, it is found that the programme is associated with a number of new working practices and a shift in management attitudes but the extent to which these are experienced as empowering varies considerably.