The Death of Numbers-Based Performance Management

Here’s a link  along with accompanying video – to a very interesting piece from Strategy and Business with regard to ineffectiveness of the majority of Performance Management systems in operation in today’s organisations.  The authors show that ranking people on a numerical basis leads to a “fight or flight” response from the recipient that more often than not does not have the effect desired – improving performance.

On the issue of feedback the authors had this to say:

“It is taken for granted that feedback motivates everyone to perform, and that top performers find it particularly useful. None of this is true. Although those with a growth mind-set react more positively to it than everyone else, typical feedback is not motivating, rewarding, or pleasant. According to one study, everyone hates it.”

The authors posit that a more effective approach eschews actual ranking and involves a structured conversation approach that adopts the principles Carol Dweck introduced with the “Growth Mindset” thereby focusing on continuously learning and trying to develop challenging goals.



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