More than just a number

Rank and file performance management alienates workers – and not just low performers
By Liz Bernier
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 11/16/2015

So-called “rank and file” performance appraisals became a popular concept at Jack Welch’s General Electric, and the idea only spread from there: Why use vague, unquantifiable adjectives to describe performance when you can have numbers and rankings? 


Using “forced ranking” or, more colloquially, the “rank and yank” model, GE made its employees compete against each other, with those at the bottom of the curve facing penalties — from a denial of raises or bonuses to losing their jobs.