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Exercises for Appraisals Skils training


I am about to begin another round of Appraisal skills training. Whilst I feel the content is fine, I feel that the exercises could be a bit better.

The topics that we cover include:
-Active Listening
-Challenging Appraisals
-Learning Needs
-Use of Positive Language

Does anyone have any exercises they would be willing to share?
Allison Preece

4 Responses

  1. Some exercises
    Hi Alison

    One way to emphasise questioning skills is firstly : Play a game of “guess who” around the table, you think of a famous person and go around the table taking a closed question off everyone (Are you a man etc.)This will take a while and its not uncommon for you to go around the table two or three times. Hence illustrating the point that closed questions will get you nowhere if you want to gain information.

    Then pair your group off and have them open question each other for one minute each way (one person questions for a minute and then the other) ask them to find out something they didn’t know about their partner. Then point out how much they found out in a short period of time compared to the amount of time it took to find out one piece of information using closed questions.

    Active listening, I just get them all into an active listening pose, which is leaning forward in their chair, with their heads tilted very slightly to the right. Always creates a bit of a laugh because we all do it together but illustrate to your group that if they think about it, when they are REALLY interested in something, they’ll adopt something similar to this pose naturally, and doing this exercise just heightens their awareness to it.

    Its like when you cover the function of the lungs in Biology at school, you suddenly become aware of your breathing pattern!!

  2. Appraisall – The Office

    There is a great clip from The Office of how not to carry out an appraisal. I’ve just this before and then asked trainees to pull together an action plan for Ricky Gervais’s character.

  3. Benefits exercise

    Split the group into 4, and ask them to discuss:

    1. Benefits to the Company
    2. Benefits to the Manager
    3. Benefits to the Individual
    4. Weaknesses in the process

    You will be surprised at the number of responses this can generate – and they are not always duplicated between groups 1 to 3.

  4. Thanks for the tips
    Thanks to everyone that has replied, will see how they work tomorrow!


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