Purpose – This paper explores the characteristics and organisational attributes of hybrid NPO/Public Sector organisational settings to identify the particular challenges presented for performance management and to further explore the extent to which such characteristics and attributes might impinge on a move to ‘performance governance’ as a performance framework ideal type. Design/methodology/approach – A preliminary case study of an Irish NPO/Public Sector hybrid organisation was used to ground a review of NPO and Public Sector performance management concepts and theoretical developments. The review focused on the implications of organisational characteristics/attributes of the hybrid case study organisation for performance management. Findings – Five organisational characteristics/attributes are identified as central to the understanding of the challenges for performance management in such settings: (i) inter-stakeholder relationships, (ii) tensions across priority objectives, (iii) culture and institutional clashes, (iv) power distribution and (v) interdependent stress. Further, it is suggested that while the adoption of collaborative public sector models suggests a move toward performance governance, the performance challenges identified in the hybrid setting give rise to particular barriers to any substantive movement in that direction. Originality/value – Performance of NPO/Public Sector hybrid organisations has only relatively recently attracted the attention of researchers. The paper contributes to this emerging area by identifying certain organisational characteristics/attributes particular to such hybrids that are critical to understanding the challenges for performance management in such settings.