The Grey Chronicles


Cultural Performance Management Analysis, Prologue

Performance LeadershipFrank Buytendijk, vice president and fellow in enterprise performance management [EPM] at Oracle, is one of the world’s leading experts in business intelligence and performance management. In his book Performance Leadership: The Next Practices to Motivate Your People, Align Stakeholders, and Lead Your Industry (2008) asks a novel question: What would happen if we applied lessons in the field of personal development to performance management? He advances a new framework, called performance management, that challenges conventional wisdom on the best practices in performance management.

Buytendijk (2008w) proposes a Performance Leadership Framework, also published in his web site, and explains:

“Performance has everything to do with passion, motivation, dedication, skills, teamwork. Performance is about People. Management is all about control, procedures, guidelines and regulations. Management is about processes and systems. In other words, Performance comes from Venus, and Management from Mars. Seen this way, ‘performance management’ is a bit of a contradiction in terms. The Performance Management Framework elevates Performance Management to a new level.”

Performance Management Framework

Performance Management Framework

Buytendijk explains the framework in terms of people:

“People make the difference between what constitutes management and what constitute leadership. . . . Leadership is more about understanding why we change and creating inspiration and motivation, while management is about protecting the status quo.”

What interested me about this book is Buytendijk’s explanation on cultural performance analysis, also featured in an interview by Profit Magazine (2009):

“Organizations should do a cultural performance management analysis before embarking on a performance management initiative . . . There are several frameworks by which describe and categorize cultures. Often these frameworks use dimensions between two extremes to classify a culture on that specific characteristic. Most of the frameworks focus on describing national cultures, and deal with many social issues. However, some of the dimensions used also apply to corporate cultures, and they affect the way performance management should be implemented.”

Cultural Performance Management AnalysisBuytendijk emphasizes on the “awareness of the characteristics of corporate culture” rather on the rightness or wrongness of such cultures. He gave an example of the framework to perform a cultural performance management analysis and compared two manufacturer companies based on six opposing pairs of characteristics: Group vs. Individual, Meritrocracy vs. Aristocracy, Rules vs. Relation, Long-term vs. Short-term; Theory X vs. Theory Y; and Internal vs. External Focus.

As Buytendijk claims, “The analysis shows that the corporate culture drives how performance management should be implemented and also works the other way around, as measurement drives behavior.” The cultural analysis framework is certainly applicable to a particular multi-cultural corporate scenario, like GSPI; thus my succeeding posts will look into each of the six opposing pairs of cultural characteristics at GSPI. It is hoped that after a series of expositions, a descriptive figure similar to the above example could be generated.


Buytendijk, Frank (2008). Performance Leadership: The Next Practices to Motivate Your People, Align Stakeholders, and Lead Your Industry. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2008. back to text

Buytendijk, Frank (2008w). Performance Leadership. Online: Performance Leadership, 2008. Graphic is a resized version of the web site’s. back to text

Mehta, Monica (2009). Performance Leadership: A Q&A with Frank Buytendijk, Profit: The Executive’s Guide to Oracle Applications, 14:1. Skokie, IL: Oracle Publishing, February 2009. p. 32-33. back to text

Disclaimer: The posts on this site does not necessarily represent any organization’s positions, strategies or opinions; and unless otherwise expressly stated, are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

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