Repository logo

Preferences for performance versus potential in promotion recommendations

Faculty Advisor




regulatory focus, job performance, employee potential, promotion recommendations, talent management

Abstract (summary)

As high‐performing employees with high potential (or superstars) are rare in the workplace, practitioners often face a performance–potential trade‐off when deciding who to promote. We use regulatory focus theory as a framework to examine whether Canadian managers (n = 58) and human resource (HR) professionals (n = 121) show a preference for performance or potential when making near‐term promotion recommendations. We show that respondents generally had a preference for performance versus potential when making their recommendations, and HR professionals versus managers accorded greater weight to potential. We discuss the implications of the relative emphasis on performance versus potential in promotion recommendations and when this may contribute to organizational inefficiencies.

Publication Information

Cadigan, F., Kraichy, D., Uggerslev, K., Martin, K., & Fassina, N. (2019). Preferences for Performance versus Potential in Promotion Recommendations. Canadian Journal of Administrative Sciences / Revue Canadienne Des Sciences de l’Administration.


Item Type





All Rights Reserved