Ah, the “halo effect”—the practice of inflating an employee’s annual evaluation to increase morale and avoid the unpleasantness of pointing out underperformers’ weaknesses. Nothing makes life easier for a harried manager who wants to avoid conflict than telling everyone they’re doing great. Too bad the halo strategy undermines performance and exposes employers to legal risks.
Performance problem? Can’t be!
Overly rosy evaluations may work in the short run, but they almost always lead to problems over the long term. Inevitably, something goes wrong. Maybe a new hard-line manager steps in and wants to eliminate underperformers. Or, maybe a known underperformer commits one mistake too many.
Whatever the reason, the time always comes when the company is ready to part ways with a subpar employee, only to discover—after looking at the employee’s past evaluations—that it has no objective basis for firing. Past evaluations s...(register to read more)