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Comment author: kodos96 17 March 2010 08:56:17PM *  8 points [-]

Getting back to trying to propose practical mitigation strategies for goodhart's law, I propose a fairly simple solution: Choose a G*, evaluate performance based on it, but KEEP IT SECRET. This of course wouldn't really work for national scale, GDP-esque kind of situations, but for corporate management situations it seems like it could work well enough. If only upper management knows what G* is, it becomes impossible to optimize for it, and everyone has to just keep working under the assumption they're being evaluated on G.

Taking it a step further, to hedge against employees eventually figuring out G* and surreptitiously optimizing for it, you could have a bounty on guessing G* - the first employee who figures out what the mystery metric G* really is gets a prize, and as soon as it's claimed, you switch to using G**

Comment author: froob 17 August 2010 01:46:21PM 6 points [-]

Andrew Grove (of Intel fame) wrote a book, High Output Management, suggesting that management needs two opposing metrics to avoid this problem. For example, measure productivity and number of defects, and score people on the combined results.

BTW the large nail/little nail joke has a third part. Soviet management eventually got a clue and started measuring by the value of the nails produced... and the result was the world's first solid-gold-nail factory.