Management by objectives is widely-spread as many companies anticipate a positive effect on performance. However, in surveys, management by objectives is described as a source for high workload, which in turn leads to stress-associated illness. In this dissertation, the practice of difficult and specific performance goals is scrutinized. Potentially problematic issues are addressed by work psychological concepts. Hypotheses are tested empirically and lead to criteria for an integrative design of management by objectives. If performance goals are derived from company goals without taking individual performance requisites into account, negative effects on mental strain cannot be ruled out. Thus, if not executed properly, modern practice of management by objectives violates work safety laws.