Agile Appraisals

Workplace Appraisals with Agile Governance

I put this together for a client recently and thought I’d share in case it’s useful for anyone else or if you have ideas to add. It’s based on the holacracy practices that I am familiar with. It should be seen as complementary to any legal or contractual HR process.

In agile governance the organisation is put at the centre. We ask “what does the organisation need to count on someone to do?”. That gives a list of accountabilities that are grouped appropriately into Roles. Souls are then matched to Roles.

An appraisal process should serve these ends:

  • Checking if the current accountabilities listed in each Role are the things the organisation needs to count on someone for and if any accountabilities are missing;
  • Checking how well the current Soul is able to play the Role(s) they are in and making any necessary adjustments

Steps in an agile appraisal process could therefore include:

Part One – Role Review

  1. Choose a Role to review
  2. Check with Soul if they feel all the currently listed accountabilities for that Role are still needed by the organisation
  3. Check with Soul if they feel there are any accountabilities missing i.e. are there any things they end up spending their time on because they need doing, that are not listed as accountabilities in the current Role description? If so, work out if the new accountabilities belong in this Role, another existing Role or a new Role
  4. Agree on adjustments of the accountabilities in the Role

Part Two – Soul Review

  1. Ask Soul how happy they are playing the current Role
  2. Check if there are accountabilities they find harder to fulfil. If so, either i. Review if the accountability should stay in that Role or be moved to another Role, or ii. See if the Soul feels they could work on that accountability with some support / training or iii. See if the Soul and organisation would be better served moving the Soul to a different Role or out of the organisation
  3. Should there be issues with accountabilities that the Soul hasn’t identified themselves, then address those as in 6 using data from performance metrics (which can include other Souls’ experience of this Soul playing that Role).
  4. If the Soul is confirmed as continuing in that Role, celebrate that through a small ritual.
  5. If the Soul is leaving their Role or the organisation, make sure that is marked with a closing ritual to honour the contribution they made.
If this was of interest, check out my talk on Integral Leadership for a Complex World