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People dislike peer evaluations for a good reason, says management professor

Assistant Management Professor Daniel Martin

Assistant Management Professor Daniel Martin

  • July 15, 2010 5:00am

CVENT reporter CM Arnold quoted Assistant Management Professor Daniel Martin in her article, “The Perils of Peer Evaluations.”   

Arnold wrote, “People tend to dislike peer evaluations for the same reason they dread annual employee appraisals with their bosses: Nobody likes to be judged. And sometimes, no matter how fair the assessments may be, if they aren't 100% positive, some employees will perceive them as personal attacks. If they're not done properly, peer reviews are no more useful than poorly executed annual evaluations.”

Martin responded that there are significant limitations to consider when using peer evaluations including:

  • The time demands placed on raters to finish the evaluations
  • Peers identifying and punishing raters who provide negative information
  • Employees cajoling peers to provide good ratings
  • Peers conspiring to provide each other with good ratings
  • Plain old bias (e.g. I’m going to rate this person poorly/well because I hate/like him)
  • The need for management/consultants to help interpret results, and companies' failure to provide ways that managers can act on the feedback they receive


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