An overwhelming majority of UK senior executives believe being able to sack a fixed number of staff every year would improve their organisation’s performance.
More than three-quarters of the 562 business leaders surveyed by management consultancy Hudson said having an annual staff cull would boost financial performance and productivity.
One in six executives said their company could target up to 20% of its workforce for dismissal per year without damaging productivity and morale. More than four in ten agreed that dismissing up to 5% of staff was positively healthy.
Steve Ballmer, chief executive of Microsoft, last year urged British businesses to follow his example and sack as many underperforming staff as possible each year.
Ensuring strong team members are not carrying the weaker ones was cited as the main advantage (60%) of deliberately releasing average or below-average performers.
But almost one in four bosses admitted that the current employment climate, where available talent is scarce, means they would rather retain average or even below-average performers.
John Rose, chief executive of Hudson UK, said: “Sometimes, the best career direction for an employee is out of the company.”