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John Hughes

John Hughes joined The Recruiter's Guild in January of 2010 as the managing director. He is also currently a managing director of a top retained executive search firm and owner of an employment site. Prior to joining an executive recruitment practice in 2009, he held recruiting leadership roles for several multi-billion dollar companies.

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The Baseball Method of Performance Management

by
John Hughes
Apr 15, 2010, 5:56 am ET

Accurate selection of employees into critical roles in corporate America continues to be a difficult endeavor at best. First, however, we should consider how we manage performance, and improve this foundational process in order to advance our ability to make better selection decisions. Having these sometimes-difficult discussions with employees regarding performance has proven to be a task that many managers prefer just to skip. As a recruiter of many years, I can’t tell you how many times I have heard a candidate tell me about a negative relationship with an immediate manager that led them to either leave an employer or be released from that employer. Oftentimes it is unclear to employees what “good” looks like, with disagreements on performance inevitably following.

When you consider sports teams, there is little to debate as to how well a player is doing. Each player and team has “stats” that offer defined information on how well a player or team is performing. Players have “batting averages” in baseball which is further defined by specifically what happened at the plate. This helps baseball leagues have a universal language of what good looks like. Today in corporate America there is no well-defined way to compare “play” across companies. Performance is often based off opinions. Whether it is the opinion of a manager, employee, and/or others, there is typically not a full understanding or accurate picture of the employee’s performance.

What if corporate America took a similar approach to professional sports teams? keep reading…