Free Essay

Job Performance

In: Business and Management

Submitted By mtj28
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Job performance is the set of employee behaviors that contribute to organizational goal accomplishment. It has three components: 1) task performance, or the transformation of resources into goods and services; 2) citizenship behaviors, or voluntary employee actions that contribute to the organization; and 3) counterproductive behaviors, or employee actions that hinder organizational accomplishments. This chapter discusses trends that affect job performance in today’s organizations, as well as practices that organizations can use to manage job performance.


After reading this chapter, you should be able to answer the following questions:

2.1 What is the definition of job performance? What are the three dimensions of job performance?
2.2 What is task performance? How do organizations identify the behaviors that underlie task performance?
2.3 What is citizenship behavior, and what are some specific examples of it?
2.4 What is counterproductive behavior, and what are some specific examples of it?
2.5 What workplace trends affect job performance in today’s organizations?
2.6 How can organizations use job performance information to manage employee performance?


I. Job Performance

A. Defined as the value of the set of employee behaviors that contribute either positively or negatively to organizational goal accomplishment

1. Behaviors are within the control of employees, but results (performance outcomes) may not be

2. Behaviors must be relevant to job performance

II. What Does It Mean To Be A “Good Performer”?

A. Task Performance

1. Task performance involves employee behaviors that are directly involved in the transformation of organizational resources into the goods or services that the organization produces

a. Routine task performance involves well-known responses to predictable demands b. Adaptive task performance involves responses to novel or unusual task demands c. Creative task performance involves developing ideas or physical products that are both novel and useful

2. Job analysis can be used to define task performance for different jobs

a. List the activities done on the job b. Use “subject matter experts” to rate each activity on importance and frequency c. Select the activities that are rated highly on importance and frequency and use them to describe the job d. Job analysis results can be used to create the tools managers need to evaluate job performance e. O*NET (the Occupational Information Network) is an online database that provides job descriptions for most jobs i. Information from O*NET needs to be supplemented to capture organizational values and strategies 3. Task performance behaviors are not simply “performed” or “not performed” – the best employees exceed performance expectations by going the extra mile on the job

B. Citizenship Behavior

1. Citizenship behavior is defined as voluntary employee activities that may or may not be rewarded, but contribute to the organization by improving the overall quality of the setting in which the work takes place

a. Interpersonal citizenship behavior involves assisting and supporting coworkers in a way that goes beyond normal job expectations. Helping, courtesy, and sportsmanship are all interpersonal citizenship behaviors

b. Organizational citizenship behavior involves supporting and defending the organization through voice (offering supportive ideas for change), civic virtue (participating in company activities at a deeper-than-normal level), and boosterism (representing the company in a positive way in public.)

c. Citizenship behaviors are relevant for all jobs, and provide clear benefits to the effectiveness of work groups and organizations d. Citizenship behaviors become more vital during organizational crises

C. Counterproductive Behavior

1. Counterproductive behaviors intentionally hinder organizational goal accomplishments

a. Property deviance harms an organizations assets and possessions and can include sabotage and theft

b. Production deviance reduces the efficiency of work output, and includes wasting resources and substance abuse c. Political deviance refers to behaviors that harm individuals within the organization, and can include gossiping and incivility d. Personal aggression involves hostile verbal and physical actions taken towards other employees. Examples are harassment and abuse.

D. Summary: What Does it Mean to be a Good Performer?

III. Workplace Trends that Affect Job Performance

A. Knowledge Work

1. Jobs that involve cognitive activity are becoming more prevalent than jobs that involve physical activity 2. As a result, employees are being asked to work more quickly, learn continuously, and apply more theoretical and analytical knowledge on the job

B. Service Work

1. Service workers have direct verbal or physical interaction with customers, and provide a service rather than a good or a product 2. Service work is one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy, with 20 percent of new jobs created between now and 2012 likely to be service jobs 3. The costs of bad performance are more immediate and obvious in service work, and service work contexts place a greater premium on high levels of citizenship behavior and low levels of counterproductive behavior

IV. Application: Performance Management

A. Management By Objectives (MBO)

1. MBO is a performance evaluation system that evaluates people on whether or not they have met pre-established goals. It is best suited for employees with jobs that have quantifiable measures of job performance. a. Employee meets with manager to develop mutually agreed-upon objectives b. Employee and manager agree on a time period for meeting those objectives c. Manager evaluates employee based on whether or not objectives have been met at the end of the time period

B. Behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales (BARS)

1. BARS look at job behaviors directly a. Critical incidents are used to develop evaluation tool that contains behavioral descriptions of good and poor performance b. Supervisors typically rate several dimensions and average across them to get overall rating c. BARS can complement MBO by providing information about why an objective has been missed

C. 360 Degree Feedback

1. A 360 Degree performance evaluation includes performance information from anyone who has firsthand experience with an employee – including subordinates, peers, and customers a. With the exception of the supervisor’s ratings, all ratings are combined so raters stay anonymous to employee b. 360 degree ratings are best suited for use as a developmental, rather than evaluative, tool, because of difficulties related to combining information from different sources, and the possibility of bias in the ratings

D. Forced Ranking Systems

1. Forced ranking systems make managers “grade on a curve” when evaluating performance, allocating some percentage of employees into categories such as below average, average, or above average a. These systems were popularized by Jack Welch at General Electric, whose “vitality curve” grouped employees into the “top 20”, “vital 70”, and “bottom 10” categories b. Although these systems force managers to differentiate between employees, they may be inconsistent with team-based work, which requires more collaboration than competition

E. Social Networking Systems

1. Technologies like those used in Facebook and Twitter are beginning to be used to provide feedback, monitor performance, update goals, and discuss performance management issues

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