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How Employees Fail #2

18 Jan

Research shows there are three broad predictors of success in the workplace:

• Competence

• People skills

• Integrity

Put more explicitly, problem employees:

• Are incapable of carrying out their basic job

• Treat others (co-workers, customers, vendors) badly

• Lie, cheat, steal

Let’s review tactics to address each of these issues one at a time.

This issue of poor performance in the technical aspects of the job is probably the easiest of the three.  If your hiring practices are satisfactory, sometimes people do not master a job.  A reasonable assumption is they need training/coaching.  You should begin with intensive coaching.  Most people rapidly respond favorably to this type of attention.  If six weeks of this doesn’t show progress then you may have to consider finding a better job fit for the person or releasing them from employment.  More about this later in this series.  Next week, what about integrity problems?

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When Feedback Fails

11 Jan

Most managers spend lots of time chasing problems.  I once was involved in a difficult personnel issue that continued for nearly a year before it was resolved.  It consumed a third of my time and was very unpleasant.

As I look back on that problem I am fairly sure that had I been more proactive the solution, which resulted in a resignation, would have been faster and better for everyone.  But, my hindsight is 20/20.

When we have people problems, especially in small organizations, they can quickly become major issues.  This blog begins a series on ways to prevent or if the problem occurs when we are not noticing, act in an effective manner.

Let’s begin with the reasonable assumption that you will have a problem employees so there is little gained by reviewing prevention. Save this topic for later.

Next week we will define the three general types of people problems you will experience as a manager.  One of these is probably impossible to solve.  However, the other two are manageable if you have the appropriate tools.