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’21 Ways to Improve Appraisals’ by Dick Barton

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Title: 21 ways to improve appraisals
Authors: Dick Barton
Publisher: Dick Barton
Price: £6, falling to£3 as the quantity ordered increases
Publication: July 2000


This is the third book in the “21 ways to…” series, previous volumes addressing meeting your personal development needs, improving your meetings and making the most of your time.

As the title suggests this is a slim volume running to just twenty-four pages. This is not to suggest that it lacks content merely that it is concise in its treatment of the subject. The author emphasises that good appraisals are not just once a year occurrences but ongoing events, and that to be successful the purpose of the appraisal must be made explicit. He makes clear the appraisee’s role in preparing for the formal review whilst providing tactics for the appraiser to gain the maximum benefit from the process. The sections on encouraging reticent participants and their opposites- the tidal waves are particularly well explained.

My only criticism of the book is that on occasion it is rather too brief, for example on past factors that may effect your attitude towards individuals (way 13). Suggestions for further reading may also have been helpful. Overall though an excellent introduction to conducting effective appraisals with an emphasis on involving and listening to the appraisee.

The full contents pages of this and the other three books in the series are available at the following location: It is also possible to download sample chapters from the four books in the series. In addition there are details on cost, how to order and future publications.


Patric Devitt
Psynergy consulting
[email protected]

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