Agency theory and performance appraisal : How bad theory damages learning and contributes to bad management practice. / Evans, Samantha; Tourish, Dennis.

In: Management Learning, Vol. 48, No. 3, 01.07.2017, p. 271-291.

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Agency theory and performance appraisal : How bad theory damages learning and contributes to bad management practice. / Evans, Samantha; Tourish, Dennis.

In: Management Learning, Vol. 48, No. 3, 01.07.2017, p. 271-291.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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@article{8d67939a3bac43f5ac54291efbfe5eb1,
title = "Agency theory and performance appraisal: How bad theory damages learning and contributes to bad management practice",
abstract = "Performance appraisal interviews remain central to how employees are scrutinised, rewarded and sometimes penalized by managers. But they are also often castigated as ineffective, or even harmful, to both individuals and organizations. Exploring this paradox, we highlight the influence of agency theory on the (mal)practice of performance appraisal. The performative nature of HRM increasingly reflects an economic approach within which its practises are aligned with agency theory. Such theory assumes that actors are motivated mainly or only by economic self-interest. Close surveillance is required to eliminate the risk of shirking and other deviant behaviours. It is a pessimistic mind-set about people that undermines the supportive, co-operative and developmental rhetoric with which appraisal interviews are usually accompanied. Consequently, managers often practice appraisal interviews while holding onto two contradictory mind-sets, a state of Orwellian Doublethink that damages individual learning and organizational performance. We encourage researchers to adopt a more radical critique of appraisal practices that foregrounds issues of power, control and conflicted interests between actors beyond the analyses offered to date.",
author = "Samantha Evans and Dennis Tourish",
year = "2017",
month = jul,
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/1350507616672736",
language = "English",
volume = "48",
pages = "271--291",
journal = "Management Learning",
issn = "1350-5076",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Ltd",
number = "3",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Agency theory and performance appraisal

T2 - How bad theory damages learning and contributes to bad management practice

AU - Evans, Samantha

AU - Tourish, Dennis

PY - 2017/7/1

Y1 - 2017/7/1

N2 - Performance appraisal interviews remain central to how employees are scrutinised, rewarded and sometimes penalized by managers. But they are also often castigated as ineffective, or even harmful, to both individuals and organizations. Exploring this paradox, we highlight the influence of agency theory on the (mal)practice of performance appraisal. The performative nature of HRM increasingly reflects an economic approach within which its practises are aligned with agency theory. Such theory assumes that actors are motivated mainly or only by economic self-interest. Close surveillance is required to eliminate the risk of shirking and other deviant behaviours. It is a pessimistic mind-set about people that undermines the supportive, co-operative and developmental rhetoric with which appraisal interviews are usually accompanied. Consequently, managers often practice appraisal interviews while holding onto two contradictory mind-sets, a state of Orwellian Doublethink that damages individual learning and organizational performance. We encourage researchers to adopt a more radical critique of appraisal practices that foregrounds issues of power, control and conflicted interests between actors beyond the analyses offered to date.

AB - Performance appraisal interviews remain central to how employees are scrutinised, rewarded and sometimes penalized by managers. But they are also often castigated as ineffective, or even harmful, to both individuals and organizations. Exploring this paradox, we highlight the influence of agency theory on the (mal)practice of performance appraisal. The performative nature of HRM increasingly reflects an economic approach within which its practises are aligned with agency theory. Such theory assumes that actors are motivated mainly or only by economic self-interest. Close surveillance is required to eliminate the risk of shirking and other deviant behaviours. It is a pessimistic mind-set about people that undermines the supportive, co-operative and developmental rhetoric with which appraisal interviews are usually accompanied. Consequently, managers often practice appraisal interviews while holding onto two contradictory mind-sets, a state of Orwellian Doublethink that damages individual learning and organizational performance. We encourage researchers to adopt a more radical critique of appraisal practices that foregrounds issues of power, control and conflicted interests between actors beyond the analyses offered to date.

U2 - 10.1177/1350507616672736

DO - 10.1177/1350507616672736

M3 - Article

VL - 48

SP - 271

EP - 291

JO - Management Learning

JF - Management Learning

SN - 1350-5076

IS - 3

ER -