Week 3, Paper 3: Performance Appraisal (10%)
Please review these instructions (SEE ATTACHMENT FOR INSTRUCTION) for this assignment. Then produce an approximately 500-word evaluation of Bill Blizzard?s performance in a narrative format (no bullets), referring to the employee in the third person (as Bill and Mr. Blizzard, not as "you").
Your effort will be graded on adherence to guidelines, content (including the presence of these required headings: ACCOMPLISHMENTS, STRENGTHS, AREAS NEEDING IMPROVEMENT, SPECIFIC RECOMMENDATIONS FOR IMPROVEMENT, and PROMOTION POTENTIAL), and fairness to this employee and to you as his employer. Remember to document all successes AND failures using the FACT, QUANTITY, and IMPACT/RESULT of each significant success or shortcoming.
NOTE: For this ONE assignment, you are permitted (and encouraged) to make use of the phrasing supplied in the instructions. Consider the instructions as YOUR notes about YOUR employee, rather than merely instructions for a paper. So (for this paper ONLY) it is not plagiarism for you to write "Bill has been? (followed by a phrase or sentence that appears in the instructions).
- Narrative format (may include "created" corporate logo, if desired), single-spaced, with double spacing between paragraphs
- Uses all required specific headings
- Documents all strengths and weaknesses of Mr.Blizzard
- Strengths section is well developed
- Areas needing improvement section is well developed
- Recommendations section is well developed
- Focuses on the information needs of the audience
- Positive, confident tone
- Emphatic, concise, fluent sentences
- No proofreading errors
Please submit your assignment as a Word .doc, .docx or .rtf attachment to your Assignment folder using the link below or through the Assignments gateway in the blue navbar. Your completed work is due by 3:59 p.m. ET Wednesday, Week 3.
PERFORMANCE REVIEW PAPER
Task: Write Bill Blizzard?s annual performance review. Use a narrative. third person format
with the five headings specified below. Remember to keep the appraisal balanced. Include his
specific contributions to the mission, strengths, areas in need of attention, recommendations
for improvement, and potential for promotion.
You are the manager of the Client Support Division at Crystar Enterprises, a computer software
firm in Columbia, Maryland. One of your people, Bill Blizzard, a client support specialist, has
been with the firm and your division for one year and you are required to prepare his annual
performance review. At Crystar, such reviews follow a narrative, third person format with
sections for ACCOMPLISHMENTS, STRENGTHS, AREAS NEEDING IMPROVEMENT, SPECIFIC RECOMMENDATIONS FOR IMPROVEMENT (guidance as to what
action the employee can take to better fulfill the needs of the position and the company), and
Bill is a 28-year-old technical specialist with six years of computer experience, including the
year with your division. Because of re-structuring within Crystar almost immediately after his
arrival, Bill has had to handle more general customer support as well as technical problems. Bill
is outstanding (for his experience level) in his technical skills, and has a good "track record" as a
troubleshooter. Specifically, he developed a new trouble-shooting procedure guide that lets less
experienced workers spot problems and solve them in less than a third the time required
previously. In the past year, Bill has solved over 100 serious client application problems,
winning repeat business and sound customer relations with clients having large accounts.
However, Bill?s people skills remain marginal, despite specific discussions and goal-setting
sessions you have had with him each quarter of the past year. He attended one sensitivity training
class (one week) during the second quarter, but has made excuses for not attending the additional
people skills seminars you recommended in the last two quarterly reviews. Bill tends to become
frustrated when dealing with problems he feels clients should be able to solve on their own. His
attitude shows through when dealing with those clients; he is frequently brusque and impatient
with non-technical clients, many of who have complained to you about what they perceive as his
You hired Bill because of his technical skills and his potential to be groomed as a Client
Technical Support Branch manager, but you have been a bit disappointed in the lack of
flexibility he has shown so far. You still feel that Bill has very good potential, but that he will
need to redirect his priorities if he is to meet your expectations of him. Bill has strong organizational skills and is very good at time management. In some ways, his
attempts at efficiency may be alienating clients. He tends to want problems defined precisely so
he can diagnose them and resolve them quickly and efficiently. Several non-technical clients
have explained problems in such general terms that Bill has lost his patience and voiced his
Crystar is committed to excellent client support, but must use its down-sized, limited resources
wisely. Bill understands the company?s commitment and has tried to separate genuine problems
(those caused by defects in the product) from user -created problems caused by their particular
application or "customization" of the software, or their computer "illiteracy." His attempt to
control costs has alienated some clients who have threatened to seek other vendors unless they
have better support from Crystar. They have complained about his lack of responsiveness and his
unwillingness to solve what they perceive to be shortcomings in the software.
Write Bill?s performance review. Add any details you think appropriate but DON? T CHANGE
THE BASIC SITUATION. Provide specific guidance as to what Bill might do to improve his
performance and fulfill the potential you see in him.
Bill thinks he has been doing a conscientious job and will be surprised by any negative
comments in his review. To upset him might mean his resignation. However, despite three
quarterly reviews, Bill has continued to concentrate on the areas of his technical expertise rather
than developing the broader managerial and supervisory skills the company needs. Instead of
delegating major tasks, he has tried to solve all really challenging problems himself. He needs to
learn how to delegate responsibility and to oversee those who must carry out routine tasks.
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