“It’s possible to rank employees in entirely new ways in the age of big data. People in sales are used to seeing their numbers compared. But now everything from how well truck drivers drive, to individual author web traffic and how quickly engineers write code can be quantified in great detail,” writes Max Nisen for Quartz.
Companies need to be careful about how they use that information. Ranking people publicly, even if it’s done with the intention of creating friendly competition or transparency, can backfire depending on a company’s culture.
In a new study of a trucking company in the midst of adopting Toyota’s famous lean principles (which emphasize respect, humility, and collective outcomes over individual ones) researchers from NYU and Columbia found that putting up a leaderboard comparing individual performance had vastly different effects, depending on whether or not an individual site had undergone the new cultural training.
Today’s Question: Is your employer effective at measuring performance?