Three Problems Managers Face and How To Fix Them – Part 1

Have you ever tossed and turned at night because you’re so stressed out, worrying about your employees? Unfortunately, you’re not alone and the problems you’re worrying about likely fit into the top three problems managers worry about. Thankfully, that means that there are plenty of people trying to solve these problems, which means you can stop worrying and start fixing them. In this first part of our two-part series, we’ll look at two of the biggest stressors managers face, below:

Bringing Up Poor Employee Performance

Most managers dread having to have ‘the chat’ about poor performance with their employees. Whether you fear your employee might take the news badly and become emotional or you just don’t want to deal with the performance management program process or paperwork, there are plenty of reasons to put it off until later.

As the days turn into weeks, the employee that’s not performing well could be causing damage to your business and stress to your other employees. There are a number of risks in failing to address poor employee performance, such as:

  • Damage to team morale if other employees are ‘picking up the slack’ that the underperforming employee is causing.
  • Damage to the business if the poor employee performance is causing customer/client loss or similar.
  • Risk to managers careers if the employee is causing issues that the manager may be blamed for (or the manager is blamed for not addressing the problems). 
  • Unfairness to the employee themselves – how can they change their performance if they are not aware it’s an issue. 

How To Fix It

In order to make the process of addressing poor employee behaviour easier for managers (and fix all the above issues) organisations need to…

  • Ensure all employees (including managers) are well aware of their role and what it entails.
  • Make sure that the processes to measure and assess employee performance are robust in their assessment and make common sense in their delivery.
  • Ensure the employee performance measurement processes are communicated to and understood by all employees.
  • Implement simple-to-follow policies designed to guide managers about how best to manage underperformance.
  • Implement training to ensure managers are equipped with the skills required to identify and manage underperformance, as well as build confidence to handle difficult conversations.

Dealing With Negative Management

There are plenty of people who don’t like their boss and there are plenty of people in management that probably shouldn’t be allowed to command other people. There’s a difference between having to deal with a grumpy boss or a boss participating in major corruption; however, your processes should prevent both of these from occurring.

The impact of negative management includes:

  • The behaviour by people in authority generally ‘sets the tone’ for what’s acceptable behaviour, so a poorly performing manager can corrupt an entire workplace.
  • It can cause low employee morale and productivity.
  • Higher rates of employee leave, inability to retain or attract good staff and potential WorkCover claims.
  • Public or external reputational damage due to claims of corruption, discrimination, bullying or harassment.

How To Fix It

Not only do you need training in order to educate staff and management on how to identify inappropriate or corrupt behaviour (negative behaviour), but you also need a method for empowering your employees to say something when they see something. Organisations need to:

  • Ensure employees always have multiple avenues available to them for reporting negative behaviour so they feel comfortable doing so, even if more than one manager is responsible for the behaviour.
  • There should be a method of anonymous reporting available at all times
  • Ensure all staff members are aware of how to identify and report negative behaviour. Make the process extremely clear.
  • Ensure all staff members are trained on how this type of negative behaviour affects people and the business. This builds empathy.
  • Set very clear standards of behaviour and outline these within your organisation’s policies.

That’s it for Part 1 of this 2-part series. Join us again and learn more by reading ‘Three Problems Managers Face and How To Fix Them – Part 2’. If you are having these or similar problems in your workplace, give Emverio Workplace Solutions a call on 1300 414 179 or click here to visit our contact page.

If you would like to request a workplace mediations, please download and complete a Mediation Request Form and return it to info@mediations.emverio.com

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