Industrial Engineer Engineering and Management Solutions at Work

October 2012    |    Volume: 44    |    Number: 10

The member magazine of the Institute of Industrial Engineers

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Don’t promote the villains

A closer look at proper metrics helps uncover those who game the system 

By Donald Kennedy and Michael Huston

Everyone knows there are good managers and those who are not so good. But does everyone agree on who is which? Even Plato (and perhaps earlier researchers) wondered why certain people who obviously lack desired qualities are placed in management roles and why others who are recognized as better are not. In the following case, an unsung hero who was saving the company millions of dollars was passed over for promotion based on management’s incorrect perception of a colleague’s “good” work. Complex situations often prevent figuring out who is the hero, but sometimes sleuthing yields the truth.


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