Peer review takes some confidence

Peer review is the final stage of the Pizazz and the PIE Abacus process; and peer review from colleagues in comparable roles within any organisation can be very productive. Peer review from a group of trusted but external colleagues is the mark of the 'gold standard' assessment.

Which is to say that for many, this is probably unattainable.

Both the Pizazz on paper and the PIE Abacus have set out to be as useful as possible for as many services as possible, and at any stage in the development and progress as PIEs ( see: 'FAQs: Ambition and modesty').

So the encouragement to use peer review should be seen in this light.   You do what is useful to you. You do what you are ready for. You do what you can.


Take small steps

For many services, even finding the time to complete the first stages of the assessment is demanding. Moving on to the diagnosis of the 'helping and hindering ' factors may seem more obviously useful; and the forward planning stage may then seem more constructive. But going outside the team to ask others' opinions of your work can seem quite threatening.

In the page here (HERE) on 'the coffee break Pizazz', we have tried to suggest how even a very informal conversation can cover a lot of the ground for an assessment, including the action planning and peer review.

But for those ready to go a step further, a useful (and still non- intimidating) beginning might be to invite a single colleague from another comparable team in your own agency. If in turn you offer to do the same for them, that's a peer review.

It doesn't even need to be someone in the same agency. Although we appreciate you might not want to invite the views of a colleague in a local agency that might conceivably be a competitor - and certainly not a funder - there will be someone somewhere that you feel is broadly sympathetic and supportive.

That's not a bad place to start.

As you gain confidence, you may well find that the opportunity to talk over successes and constraints begins to seem valuable.



Further background reading/listening/viewing

PIElink pages

Partially PIE'd? : HERE

The coffee break Pizazz : HERE

Ambition and modesty (PIE Abacus FAQ)  : HERE

360 degree evaluation : HERE


Library items

The full paperwork

The basic Pizazz assessment summary sheets are  HERE

The Pizazz Handbook, 'Useful questions',  is HERE

Pizazz assessment levels guidance is HERE

Advice for Pizazz assessment facilitators is HERE

Creative Commons licence terms are HERE


The Pizazz now also come in two formats - the 'pen and paper' format, and the electronic/on-line format, known as the PIE Abacus.

The 'pen and paper' format is suitable for simpler and smaller services, where getting round a table to meet and discuss face-to-face is an option.

The electronic/on-line format ( the "PIE Abacus') is geared for more complex and/or larger services, organisations and networks, where face-to-face meeting is impractical.

For the PIE Abacus, see: The PIE Abacus - an online Pizazz 

The simplest, most effective way to evaluate and improve your PIE from Daniel O'Brien on Vimeo.