Assessing performance in organizations

Performance criteria: Schneider and Scmitt in Brewerton, P. & Milward, L. (2001)”those behaviours at work that competent observers can agree constitute necessary standard of excellence to be achieved in order for the individual and the organization to both accomplish their goals.”

Most organizational research is concerned with performance, sometimes at the level of the group, but often at the level of the individual (123). Additioanlly every research question will come with assumptions. 

Ex from Table 8.1 Typical performance/outcome criteria at various levels of analysis 


Individual–sales achieved


Organizational–sales volume 

Critical Analysis 

  • Objectivity
  • Reliability/validity
  • Discrimiability
  • Accessibility 

Individual performance measure outcomes, such as typist speed are regarded as the most useful and least contaminated by error (125).

Rating effects

Halo: “occurs when the rater tends to give the same level of rating across all criteria”. 

Cultural tendency, severity, and leniency–the rater uses part of a rating scale due to a personal preference. 

Context–differences in individual ratings of employees when alone or in a group setting. 

Similar-to-me raters make judgements as to the similarity or dissimilarity of the person they are rating to themselves, and this affects the judgement of performance.  (128)

Brewerton, P. & Milward, L. (2001). Organizational Research Methods: A Guide for Students and Researchers. London: Sage.