Against metrics: how measuring performance by numbers backfires - Jerry Z Muller | Aeon Ideas
Metric fixation can make employees ignore the real values and goals of the company and focus on their short-term weekly or monthly goals so that they keep their jobs, get a pay raise or have their stock options out at the right time.
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Metric Fixation, an epidemic in most of the world's biggest companies is a way to measure employee performance primarily by numbers, counted, tallied, compiled and analyzed in daily, weekly or monthly intervals.
The rewards of the metric performance measurement can be as a form of a monetary bonus, stocks or just an enhanced grade or designation, leading to competition among employees. This leads to many employees gaming the system to affect the bottom line of their metrics.
Example: Surgeons can refuse to treat patients having a complicated condition, as it may affect their failure rate.
On a macro level, metric fixation can lead to companies focussing on the quarterly report while ignoring any real R&D work, that takes years to provide any result.
Companies also suffer millions of hours of productivity loss due to employees maintaining performance records, a lot of expenses spent on recording and tracking tools, and the time it takes to read or analyze the numbers.
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It refers to an observation wherein people who perform well in their job gets promoted until eventually, they will reach a stage where they are incompetent for that job.
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It showed that the best salespeople as measured by sales revenue are more likely to be promoted (top figure) but their value added as managers actually declines in their sales revenues (bottom figure).
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