Original Research

Implementing traditional performance management in the innovative age: A new model for Botswana’s public sector

John Bester, Costa Hofisi
Africa’s Public Service Delivery & Performance Review | Vol 8, No 1 | a392 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/apsdpr.v8i1.392 | © 2020 John Bester, Costa Hofisi | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 March 2020 | Published: 21 December 2020

About the author(s)

John Bester, Department of Public Administration, North-West University, Vanderbjilpark, South Africa
Costa Hofisi, Department of Public Administration, North-West University, Vanderbjilpark, South Africa


Background: Public statements on the deteriorating quality of public service in Botswana resulted in the implementation of performance management systems (PMS) in 1999 to restore the public’s confidence in the ability of the public service to deliver quality service. However, this has not yielded the required results as student performance and service provision continue to decline.

Aim: This theoretical article is aimed at developing a performance management model that would replace the current one which has failed to motivate employees to improve performance.

Setting: The study was located within the innovation theory and focused on the two biggest ministries in Botswana, namely, local government and the education ministry.

Methods: The grounded theory was used to collect data through the mixed approach. Purposive sampling was used to select 80 employees, with each ministry providing 40 participants. Participants from the local government ministry work at headquarters and 30 participants of the education ministry also work at headquarters with the other 10 working as school managers.

Results: Findings of the study revealed that the current model had the following challenges in motivating employees to improve performance: lack of incentives, amount of paperwork and complexity of forms, relevance of information on performance development plan forms, the five-point rating scale and the performance review meetings.

Conclusion: The current model has failed to motivate employees because it lacks performance incentives and focuses on rating employees instead of improving employee performance through coaching. The Public Service Integrated PMS is proposed.


public sector; model; performance management; Botswana; rating scale; performance improvement.


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