Microsoft is ending its longtime practice of stack ranking employees even as Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has implemented a similar "rank and yank" policy in which poorly graded workers can be dismissed. The tech giants' policies are based on opposing business philosophies, with Microsoft betting on people and Yahoo betting on managerial processes. "It's fair to say that most companies sit somewhere on the spectrum between the two extremes, and that the best approach probably lies somewhere in the middle," Jennifer Reingold writes.

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