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09/26/2013

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Interesting serendipity, Chuck. This story appeared today http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/highschool-prep-rally/utah-coach-suspends-entire-team-over-poor-discipline-104153969.html about a football team disbanded over off-field misbehaviors. It parallels your thoughts. Behavior modification experience has proven that recognition and reinforcement can be applied to extinguish undesirable acts, too. Of course, positives are always preferred, but some negatives may be needed to balance otherwise intrinsic rewards for self-centered actions that overwhelm the few positive incentives to place the team over self.

If consequences are not balanced to favor the desirable outcomes, misbehaviors may still continue no matter how much you praise the better actors. Unless rewards for bad behaviors are removed, extra recognition might not be sufficient, although it can make you and the "losers" (whom you call "winners") feel better.

Agree with you, Chuck. Organizations must take in to consideration the behavioural aspects in the performance review process.

How do you suggest this be done in practice? The usual 360 degree reviews and Management by Objectives is good enough or there are other means?

Ahhh, there are more suggested solutions than raindrops in a summer shower. Everyone seems to have "the answer," yet the problem persists. A client I'm working with now prefers to use a behavior rating as a modifier factor to the annual performance review rating. It tends to focus an employees attention to the fact that "results by any means" does not fit with their performance culture.

I'm sure though, that many other possibilities are out there. Just make sure they are tailored to the uniqueness of your own organization, not to some off-the-shelf one-answer-fit-all canned solution.

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