In pursuit of mediocrity … Congress moves to squash pay for performance.

Ken’s Take: (1) Expect this to spread to private industry as Congress grabs more and more power to control managers’ compensation  (2) And folks wonder why government bureaucracies are so inefficient.

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Excerpted from WSJ, “Forget About Merit”,  April11, 2009

Last month the Pentagon announced it would “review” a pay-for-performance system that now covers some 200,000 of its civilian employees. In short, merit pay for work well done.

House Democrats are now pushing to freeze pay for performance across the entire federal government.  They say, “A well-designed performance management system can recognize and reward high performance without a linkage to compensation.”

As the biggest merit plan in the government, the National Security Personnel System has been a prime target of federal employee unions  … Unions prefer a return to a universal General Schedule system, which compensates employees based on time served …  keeping workers out of a system where their own efforts can affect their compensation and advancement …  makes them more dependent on the union to negotiate for them.

During the campaign, Obama said he would consider an overhaul or “complete repeal” of the merit pay system.

Full article:
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123940322061309643.html

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