Challenge Yourself And Learn About Performance Management

Straight Talk About Performance Management Crossword Puzzle

For some people performance management is a rather dull topic, but nonetheless a proper performance management system can help managers and employees, let alone the entire enterprise, become much more effective.

Sadly, most performance management systems consist of an annual review, and ONLY an annual review, and that often causes degraded performance, micromanagement, consumption of unnecessary time, and bad feelings.

If you've explored this site, you'll have come across a lot of very practical ways you can get performance management working, but it requires some shifting in mindset.

The Puzzle

To make learning about managing performance for this millennium, we are building some crossword puzzles so you can both test your current understanding, and expand your thinking.

The version below is interactive, and fairly self-explanatory. The content is based on the many articles on this site, and my own books on the topic published by McGraw-Hill. Stay tuned for more in this series.


View Completed Puzzle

Straight Talk About Performance Management Crossword Puzzle

Copyright 2015 by Robert Bacal (Bacal & Associates)

Complete the crossword, then click on "Check" to check your answer. If you are stuck, you can click on "Hint" to get a free letter. Click on a number in the grid to see the clue or clues for that number. If you would like to view the completed puzzle, click on the completed puzzle link below to view it in a new window. If you use the "Hint" feature your score will be lowered.

1      2    3           4      5   
6    7        8     9    10      11     
   14            15         


6. An effective performance management system can increase _______ ______ because it puts job tasks within a larger context.
12. Employee ______ CANNOT be meaningfully added together to create a total score, because they are labels and not quantities.
14. Tying ___ to annual reviews puts manager and employee on different sides, rather than part of the same team.
15. Author Robert ____ is the author of this crossword puzzle, and also the author of a number of popular selling books on performance management published by McGraw-Hill.
16. If we applied employee appraisals to our ______ _____, the human race would die out.
17. Objective goals are less important than ensuring that the meaning of the goals is ______ _______ between manager and employee.


1. A manager's job is to _____ ______ to employee performance, and otherwise stay out of the way.
2. ______ _______ is only mathematically supported when employees are randomly selected, so their true ability takes the form of a bell curve, which never happens in real life.
3. Setting employee goals helps them understand the ______ __ _____ because they understand where they fit.
4. When evaluating, human beings have a tendency towards the _____ ____, among others, and overstate the importance of the latest observations.
5. ______ ______ are just a way of recording things and often managers will do ONLY what is required to fill them in. #Fail
7. Performance _____ is the process of setting objectives, AND identifying ways to improve the employee's success in meeting those objectives.
8. _____ ______ of employees feel they are above average, according to research.
9. If all you do is _____ ______ to manage performance, you are better off doing NOTHING at all.
10. All in all, a manager's primary function is to make sure each ______ _____ and succeeds.
11. It's easy to objectively measure the _____, but it's impossible to objectively measure an employee's total contribution.
13. Performance management is a _____, where it will only work if you do ALL the steps in the process.

About Company

Bacal & Associates was founded in 1992 by consultant and book author, Robert Bacal. Robert's books on performance management and reviews have been published by McGraw-Hill. He is available for consultation, training and keynote speaking on performance and management at work.


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We Believe

  • Performance management and appraisal MUST be a partnership between manager and employee where BOTH benefit.
  • Performance management can be the lever for improved employee engagement.
  • The review process is the LEAST important part of performance management
  • If managers aren't managing employee performance, why are they there?

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  • 722 St. Isidore Rd.
  • Casselman
  • Ontario
  • Canada, K0A 1M0