With performance reviews due next month, I thought it might be a perfect time to try to pick up some innovative new ideas by reading something on performance from the “experts”. I’ve read couple of books on performance reviews before, and although they don’t exactly rank up there with a Stephen King thriller, I’ve always managed to learn a few new things and feel like my time reading them was well spent. So I decided with performance reviews on the near horizon, I would see if I could pick up a few new pointers.
Before buying something new, I scanned my shelves to see if there was something I may have overlooked and sure enough, I ran across a copy of PRODUCTIVE PERFORMANCE APPRAISALS by Paul Falcone. I knew immediately why I had not read the book. This is from the “WorkSmart” series. I’ve read a couple of other books from this series and have been pretty disappointed with them, so this one made its way onto the shelf unread. I decided it was time to give it a fair shake. Perhaps the other books I have read in this series were simply an anomaly and this one would turn out to be just what I was looking for.
I don’t like writing negative reviews and normally, if a book is really disappointing I end up not reviewing it at all, but that’s not really fair to other readers. Like me, I’m sure others dislike spending their hard earned money on poorly written books that are of very little value. So let me summarize here by saying, “This is a poorly written book that I found to be of very little value.”
The “WorkSmart” series is published by American Management Association under the name of AMACOM. I don’t know anything about American Management Association, but in my mind’s eye, I envision something similar to a newspaper staff room. When a scoop comes in, the editor assigns a writer to do a story on it. I envision a group of staff writers sitting around the office waiting for their next assignment. Unfortunately for Mr. Falcone, he was tasked with putting together a publication on performance reviews.
Am I being too harsh? Too critical? I don’t think so. I believe most people who are going to invest their valuable time into a reading a book on this type subject are look, as I am, for valuable takeaways that will truly improve their own job performance, and those takeaways simply are not here. Anyone who has been managing people for more than a week or two is going to already know the vast majority of the content here.
I want to provide something of an insight as to why I’m being this critical. Here’s an example of what I found within these pages – when during a performance review the employee becomes angered and begins shouting, you should try to remain calm. If you engage in shouting, the situation will escalate. Really? I paid money for this? I won’t be buying any more books from the “WorkSmart” series.
- Book Review: HIRING FOR ATTITUDE (montyrainey.wordpress.com)