EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

First-place loving and last-place loathing: How rank in the distribution of performance affects effort provision

David Gill (), Zdenka Kissova, Jaesun Lee and Victoria Prowse

Purdue University Economics Working Papers from Purdue University, Department of Economics

Abstract: Rank-order relative-performance evaluation, in which pay, promotion, symbolic awards and educational achievement depend on the rank of individuals in the distribution of performance, is ubiquitous. Whenever organizations use rank-order relative-performance evaluation, people receive feedback about their rank. Using a real-e?ort experiment, we aim to discover whether people respond to the specific rank that they achieve. In particular, we leverage random variation in the allocation of rank among subjects who exerted the same effort to obtain a causal estimate of the rank response function that describes how effort provision responds to the content of rank-order feedback. We find that the rank response function is U-shaped. Subjects exhibit ‘first-place loving’ and ‘last-place loathing’, that is subjects work hardest after being ranked first or last. We discuss implications of our findings for the optimal design of performance feedback policies, workplace organizational structures and incentives schemes.

Keywords: Relative performance evaluation; Relative performance feedback; Rank order feedback; Dynamic effort provision; Real effort experiment; Flat wage; Fixed wage; Taste for rank; Status seeking; Social esteem; Self esteem; Public feedback; Private feedback (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C23 C91 J22 M12 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-exp, nep-hrm and nep-lma
Date: 2017-06
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (11) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
https://krannert.purdue.edu/programs/phd/Working-p ... /1295-Gill-et-al.pdf (application/pdf)

Related works:
Working Paper: First-place loving and last-place loathing: How rank in the distribution of performance affects effort provision (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: First-Place Loving and Last-Place Loathing: How Rank in the Distribution of Performance Affects Effort Provision (2015) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:pur:prukra:1295

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in Purdue University Economics Working Papers from Purdue University, Department of Economics Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Krannert PHD ().

 
Page updated 2019-11-12
Handle: RePEc:pur:prukra:1295