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Peer Assessments

Updated on October 21, 2010

Teamwork and project management. (3rd ed.)

Peer Assessments

Peer assessments can strengthen a team by causing team members to evaluate each other when used in merit reviews for promotions, pay raises, or bonuses. Peer assessments when used under the premise of reviewing peers to identify a person’s strengths and weaknesses for individual improvement and team strength can be an awesome method of creating a team environment reducing negative conflicts at a peer to peer level. “Effective development results from a climate that promotes improvement. Peer assessments might help create such a climate, but it needs to be used with real care.” (Smith, 2007, Pg. 112)

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Our textbook indicates that

peer assessments are not appropriate when used as an individual’s personal grade, if you will. I cannot agree with this. Throughout this class and other classes discussing groups and teams, and keeping everything in context of an effective team, if one person receives a failing grade, everybody receives a failing grade there cannot be an inappropriate time for peer assessments. If honesty and trust is the foundation and cornerstone of building an effective team, if someone is not keeping up their end of the project they need to be dealt with in an honest and professional way, which is only achievable with peer to peer assessment.

Peer assessments are the better way

to evaluate team members and create an organizational team environment than having some manager who does not know what each individual team member contributed to the project outcome. This is especially true when an individual spends much of their time developing organizational intangible assets such as social capital and corporate intellectual knowledge, the non-intangibles, since managers have a tendency to measure only tangible results. Unknowing managers can also evaluate individual team members with personal bias; this is where the real care needs to be exercised.

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