A Promotion Structure Built on Known Expectations

Wouldn’t it be great if you knew what it took to be promoted, how much you were going to make, and get that promotion quickly? That’s the principle behind Zappos’ Pipeline, a leadership-building philosophy built on the theory that people should be treated with respect and know when, why and how much they will be rewarded for their work.

At the Future of Web Apps Conference, I chatted with Ryan Carson, the show’s producer and the owner of Carsonified, an online video tutorial training service for Web designers and developers. For his employees, Carson has fully adopted the Pipeline.

Carson fully understands he needs to treat his employees like adults. That’s why he goes out of his way to treat them well by doing little things like feeding them and giving them four-day work weeks — but also to help his team grow their careers in ways that are predictable and exciting. He doesn’t fall into the yearly review trap where no one pays attention or cares.

Employees at Carsonified set their goals and an agreed upon pay raise. If they don’t achieve that goal they’re given a timeline in which to achieve it. There’s no ambiguity.

Each person has the power to control their career. Carson loves it and so do his employees. They actually know where their career is going.

Comments

  1. BY Mike says:

    Fascinating model. Sadly, conventional management theory requires the evaluation to be spent pointing out weaknesses and insisting that folk “get better” at those tasks. A better use of resources is coaching the employee into a position that plays to strengths.

  2. BY David Spark says:

    I find the “yearly review” to be the one thing managers spend the least amount of time on, yet means the most to the employee. It’s kind of pathetic.

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>