Management makes the call in employee performance evaluations

by on June 3, 2009 · 0 Comment POSTED IN: HR Info Center

Use your employee performance evaluations to make sure the worker’s goals match the company’s

Sure, your employees want to be heard on important decisions – but they don’t want to make the decisions. They want you to make them.

It’s a fine line that good managers sometimes inadvertently cross by over-consulting workers with personal employee performance evaluations. Here’s a great example of what can happen when a manager – in this case a baseball manager – lets a subordinate make the call.


It was the deciding game of the 2003 American League Championship Series. Boston Red Sox ace pitcher Pedro Martinez was facing the archrival New York Yankees.

The Sox led 5-2 into the eighth inning, when Martinez allowed two hits with just one out.

Manager Grady Little went to the mound and everyone thought he would pull Martinez, who by this point in his career usually didn’t finish games. But the veteran Martinez said he wanted to stay in, and Little listened.

Bad move.

Martinez allowed four more hits before Little finally removed him, and the Sox went on to lose the game and the championship. Little also lost his job after the season.

Why you must make the call with employee performance evaluations

Here’s what Little forgot:

  • Employees don’t always have the same goals as the organization. Here, the notoriously proud Martinez wanted to show he could stop the hated Yankees, who had beaten him earlier in the series. The Sox only needed five more outs.
  • Employees feel there’s an implicit contract with management – “they get paid to make the decisions.” Little violated that contract.

Source: “30 Reasons Employees Hate Their Managers,” by Bruce L. Katcher, ISBN-10: 0-8144-0915-6.

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