Archive for the ‘Management’ Category

Mean curve performance management processes.

Relentless focus on managing the low-end of the curve.

Forced compliance of activities – on time, to formula.

Business doesn’t succeed by preventing people from underperforming.

Management doesn’t happen by one-size-fits-all templates.

Success is not the same as ‘not-failing’.

Good is not ‘not-bad’.

‘Not bad’ is ‘all right, I suppose’.

I have a broken leg. Resetting my broken leg does not make me an athlete.

Fixing broken things is not success.

Superstar performers fear less for their employment prospects.

Superstar performers seldom rest easy in the midst of the herd.

Come join us, we aim for average!

Come join us, we manage poor performance really well!

Come join us, you have potential to earn an above market-median salary!

Superstar performers perform despite Washington and Media hysteria.

Define success.

Free performance.

Burn templates.

Superstar performers will go further than you ever thought possible.


Somewhere along the march to compliance, someone decided that mandating the specific actions of all managers was the preferred route to protect against a very small proportion who might damage people or performance.

It was never going to work.

And leads to the infantilization of managers, as captured in the common HR resistance to change:

I can’t let managers do that, they don’t know how and will get it wrong

The vast majority of managers are decent human beings who want to see their teams flourish, perform and grow. The vast majority of managers know how to manage better than anyone in HR. The vast majority of managers carry huge organizational tax complying with HR’s impossible premise of mandating the many.

Destruction HR is about demolishing that unnecessary tax burden.


There was a poll on Twitter just now asking whether dress codes are a good or bad thing.

Dress codes.


Which century do we live in again?


… so destroy anything that displaces/dilutes accountability for an individual and the team in which they work. Some examples:

  • Cascading goals
  • HR-managed performance plans
  • Manager ‘scripts’
  • Compensation calibration
  • HR authorization of job offer salary
  • Finance-controlled budgets
  • Balanced scorecard that doesn’t have individual/team metrics
  • Rolled-up engagement survey data


… in search of THE ANSWER, thinking:

When we understand enough, we’ll act

Someone needs to tell them:

Only by acting will you learn to understand

Could that someone be you?

In some companies, HR write scripts for managers to follow in meetings with their people…

No… Really, they do…


Let’s run some numbers:

  • Company size: 10,000
  • # of managers: 1,500
  • Ave. span of control: 8 direct reports
  • Ave. hours per direct report: 3h (for self-assessment, review discussions, final documentation)
  • Total hours spent on performance management cycle = (1,500 x 8 x 3) = 36,000h
  • # hours per year = 2,000h
  • Full-time-equivalents dedicated to Performance Management = 18 FTEs*

Without factoring in lost productivity and/or questionable/negative impact upon engagement

[and resulting death spiral for performance]

by even conservative estimates, this company pays the equivalent of 18 people just to comply with the annual performance management cycle.

Run the numbers for your company. Then, walk into a business leader’s office tomorrow and offer her 18 people for no extra cost, increased engagement and less distraction from meeting customer needs. We think you’ll get backing to demolish the performance management cycle.

And, if not, what a discussion you’ll begin.


* Note: the calculation does not include any HR resource dedicated to performance management, which is as it should be; managers manage and HR gets in the way.