The Performance Appraisal Process: Lessons Learned
Earl Manners, Queen’s IRC Speaker, 2019
Just as leadership styles and organizational work have evolved, so have perspectives on performance evaluation. Traditional performance evaluation is hierarchical, control-oriented, and focused on individual ranking and grading. Present-day performance evaluation is relational, facilitative, and focused on development and problem-solving (Leadership, R. Lussier, et al).
In Ontario, teacher performance appraisal requirements and processes are legislated. While the legislation is founded on a more traditional “three strikes you are out” mandate, the philosophy and practices are more contemporary. They are “designed to provide meaningful appraisals of teachers' performance that encourage professional learning and growth; identify opportunities for additional support where required; and provide a measure of accountability to the public” (Education Act, Part X.2, Regulation 98/02, Reg 99/02).
Two recent arbitral awards regarding teacher performance appraisal in Ontario provide insight regarding best practices for strategic leaders in modern organizational work environments. A review of the Gusita award (OSSTF vs. TDSB, 2011) and the Tait award (OSSTF vs TLDSB, 2018) will highlight the arbitral standards that must be met, the essential features of performance appraisal to meet those standards, and lessons learned.
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Best Practices for the Union-Management Relationship in the Workplace
Gary T. Furlong, Queen’s IRC Facilitator, 2017
These are challenging times for public-sector finances, private-sector growth in a sputtering economy, and hard conversations at the collective bargaining table. With so many issues on the macro level, we sometimes lose sight of the day-to-day working relationship for all of our employees and bargaining unit members. For the vast majority of unionized and non-unionized workers, it is the day-to-day interactions that determine whether the workplace is a productive, engaged environment, or one that preoccupies everyone with conflict, grievances and problems. Where each workplace falls on that spectrum will largely determine productivity, quality, absenteeism, as well as retention and recruitment. In other words, success often depends on what we do each and every day in the union-management relationship.
Jointly Building a Productive, Constructive Workplace
To achieve a healthy workplace that leads to commitment and engagement, there are some important best practices that can be implemented, jointly, by the union-management partnership. Consider some or all of the following five best practices for managing in a unionized workplace.
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