From a preview on Vanity Fair (via Daring Fireball):
“Every current and former Microsoft employee I interviewed—every one—cited stack ranking as the most destructive process inside of Microsoft, something that drove out untold numbers of employees,” Eichenwald writes. “If you were on a team of 10 people, you walked in the first day knowing that, no matter how good everyone was, 2 people were going to get a great review, 7 were going to get mediocre reviews, and 1 was going to get a terrible review,” says a former software developer. “It leads to employees focusing on competing with each other rather than competing with other companies.”
This is, regrettably, not an uncommon review system. My understanding is Amazon also uses it. The company where I worked was going to implement it and fortunately backed off because, while I don’t think it’s the ultimate determiner of a company’s success, I think it’s a bunch of Social Darwinist crap.
If I wanted to work on a pirate ship, I’d work on a pirate ship. The dress code is cooler.