Nordstrom And Performance Goals Research Paper

Length: 2 pages Sources: 1+ Subject: Careers Type: Research Paper Paper: #18428096 Related Topics: Positive And Negative Reinforcement, Performance Evaluation, Team Performance, Positive Reinforcement
Excerpt from Research Paper :

Nordstrom -- Performance Goals

Nordstrom: Performance Goals

Because of the performance goals at Nordstrom, and the way in which the company promotes such an open atmosphere, there are both positive and negative impacts. The openness of the atmosphere includes the sales figures of every associate, which are posted twice each month for all associates to see. This encourages competition, but yet the company also wants the employees to work together as a team (Chance, 2003). On the surface, the idea of both competition and working together seem like they would be counterintuitive, and that they would not make a good match (Chance, 2003). Nordstrom is working to change that. However, it does not seem that this is the best type of reinforcement schedule for everyone. The top-performing employees are rewarded, while those who do not perform well can experience guilt, shame,...


All Nordstrom employees who are doing the best they can should be treated equally, and those who are not living up to expectations should be fired or otherwise "let go," as opposed to being shamed into doing better by seeing their poor sales numbers along with the much more impressive sales numbers of other employees. While there is nothing wrong with showing employees that they are not performing in a way in which is acceptable, comparing them to others for all to see does not necessarily make them want to work harder (Dinsmoor, 2004). Instead, it can make them feel uncomfortable, and can lower their self-esteem to the point that they do not see why they should continue trying -- especially if they were really trying hard to do well (Dinsmoor, 2004). This can have the opposite effect from what Nordstrom intended.

Reinforcement schedules that have been seen at other companies focus on making sure employees get rewarded if they do well, but it does not pit them against one another in a competition, and then tell them they should all work as a team. That may sound like a great idea, but it is not one that can actually be handled correctly in the long run, because people do not…

Sources Used in Documents:


Chance, P. (2003) Learning and behavior, (5th ed.). NY: Thomson-Wadsworth.

Dinsmoor, J.A. (2004) "The etymology of basic concepts in the experimental analysis of behavior." Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 82(3): 311 -- 6.

Harter, J.K., Shmidt, F.L., & Keyes, C.L. (2002). Well-Being in the Workplace and its Relationship to Business Outcomes: A Review of the Gallup Studies. In C.L. Keyes & J. Haidt (Eds.), Flourishing: The Positive Person and the Good Life (pp. 205-224). Washington D.C.: American Psychological Association.

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