• Home

Taking It To The Field


Measuring performance is a particularly challenging issue in I/O psychology. It can be especially challenging for jobs where it is difficult to determine exactly what should be measured and whether a measured criterion truly assesses performance. Even seasoned I/O psychologists wrestle with this issue from time to time.

Below is an e-mail from a client presenting you with some challenges related to defining and measuring criteria. Stacia Mattson, who works in the HR department at Collini’s Gardening Service, is having some problems. Read the e-mail, and provide critiques and suggestions for Stacia.


Thank you for agreeing to advise me on some tricky issues we’ve been having at Collini’s Gardening Service. We have about 30 gardeners working throughout several regions in Georgia. Currently, we are trying to devise a way to evaluate our gardeners so that we can give our top performers year-end bonuses. Right now, we are considering using the following measures of performance:

  • Number of plants that die under the gardener’s care for the year
  • Number of houses the gardener visits per week
  • Satisfaction ratings from the gardener’s customers

Could you please critique these measures? In addition, do you have three more suggestions for how we might assess gardener performance that I can bring to my committee as potential options?