May 27 2014

Are Bonuses for Reward or Retention?

It depends.  I know that sounds very lawyer-like, but the reality is that bonuses can and should be used for both reward and retaining top talent.  The difference lies in how well the company is performing and what expectations have been set.



Apr 25 2014

The Problem with Stacked Rankings

I'm actually on vacation so have re-posted a previous blog.  Since it's close to mid-year reviews, I thought it would be timely.

In most large corporations, like my former employer, you are required to stack rank all the employees that work for you at least once a year.  At best, stack ranking forces a manager to view performance on a relative basis. At worse, it’s used as an arbitrary and biased tool for corporate layoffs. I resented having to stack rank my team. Here’s why:






Nov 20 2013

Should You Fire or Coach a Poor Performer?

I think many managers try to coach poor performers, especially new managers. If you think about it, professional sports may be the only place where one bad season can cost you your job.   In January of this year alone, twelve coaches and general managers were fired and that was just in the NFL. Even crack smoking mayors like Rob Ford seem to keep their job long past their expiration date.



Sep 04 2013

Freshening Up the Stale Performance Appraisal

Here’s a shocker- half of employees think their performance appraisals are inaccurate and over half feel they don’t motivate performance.  What we've always known has finally been validated by a study completed by Globoforce Consulting. As a manager, I hated completing the “annual” review. They were a boatload of work and were rarely an accurate reflection of performance because:

Apr 02 2013

Bad Employees Never Quit!

I had to laugh when I read the recent article in the WSJ that validated what I learned years ago.  Bad employees are happy employees. In over 40% of the companies they surveyed, low performers were found to be more engaged and enjoyed working for their companies more than middle and high performers.  Why wouldn’t they be?

Feb 21 2013

3 Ways to Make Your Year-End Assessments Like the Oscars

My friends know that I’m a tad obsessed about all things entertainment.  I subscribe to the quasi-legitimate People and Us, and the very legitimate Entertainment Weekly. So come Academy Award time, like this weekend, I’m in my element.  It got me thinking, why don’t managers assess and reward people like the Oscars do?

Dec 21 2012

New Year’s Resolution # 1- Get Rid of the Annual Appraisal!

If you’re like most people, you’re already thinking about resolutions for next year. Let me suggest one for you. Stop using an annual or semi-annual appraisal.  If you can’t deliver feedback in real time, what’s the point?