Rank or Yank…

A shiver ran down my spine as I heard those words… "…and 5% of them will be killed…" No this quote is not from an POW story… this is the story of a family…

The family had lots of members… grandfathers, grandmothers, fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews, and grandchildren… 22 people in total… these were the times of scarcity the rain last year had not been great… just enough…

The great grandfather one day thought: "This year I will get lesser food… since I will have to share my share with all of them…" the conceited man that he was he got together with the co-conspirator who was the great grandmother and formed a plan…

At the dinner table next evening silence spoke and fear grew, the night was still… The great grandmother spoke (she was the spokesperson): "This year your performance will be rated differently…" people fearing the worst shivered… they knew how conceited she was and would go to any extent to ensure her importance in the family… she continued "… this year we will rate you as per the forced distribution method (explanation appended)…"

Explanation: Managers sort fixed percentages of their employees into categories like “superior” or “needing improvement”; those in the top group typically receive the best compensation, training and promotions while those at the bottom may be denied raises or promotions, or even fired.

She went to the blackboard and drew this…










After drawing this she spoke… "According to this new method you will be forced to work 8 hours a day in field irrespective of the rain, plough, tractor, or any other resource available… considering your performance in last year you will be rated between 1-5 (where 1=best and 5=worst). The rewards will be commiserate with the performance. Members will receive following rewards…

  • grade ‘1’ ration increased by 100% and no work hours, they will monitor grade ‘5’ (the ones not executed) & ‘4’ in next year
  • grade ‘2’ ration increased by 50% and work hours reduced to 4 hours a day
  • grade ‘3’ no additional food, 8 hours of work, no benefits
  • grade ‘4’ ration cut down to 50% and work hours increased to 12 hours a daygrade ‘5’ will be sent to the execution stands or will have to work 16 hours to make up for the lost work last year… ofcourse they will not be served any lunch at all… only dinner and that too left over from lunchtime"

She continues, "some people may have objections and/or concerns about the executing their people during this review time. But we need to send strong message that we are a performance driven family and poor performance is not acceptable here…" There will be only a few members in each category…

  • grade ‘1’ – 5% (1 persons)
  • grade ‘2’ – 15% (3 persons)
  • grade ‘3’ – 60% (12 persons)
  • grade ‘4’ – 15% (3 persons)
  • grade ‘5’ – 5% (1 person)

A year later…

There was a great rainy season but the production reduced to 25% of what it was last year the main reason being nobody to plough the fields, work the tractors… All in all 11 people left the family and joined another family where the head also worked hard in the field and they shared everything that they earned…


  • grade ‘1’ – 5% (1 persons) – nobody quit from this group
  • grade ‘2’ – 15% (3 persons) – 1 person quit from this group
  • grade ‘3’ – 60% (12 persons) – 6 people quit from this group
  • grade ‘4’ – 15% (3 persons) – all 3 quit
  • grade ‘5’ – 5% (1 person) – this guy too quit

I guess the ‘great grandfather’ did not know that… "the juice was not worth the squeeze…"


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s