How long is too long?

I’m not talking about my personal life but rather employee relationships.  Like other hiring managers and leaders, we have all experienced an employee that was so capable or met a much-needed skillset but just wasn’t performing to par.  There are many great resources on how to manage an underperforming employee through performance improvement plans but sometimes we need to ask ourselves tough questions to feel right about our decision.

Here are some honest questions I’ve had to ask myself when faced with the difficult decision:

  • Is the employee draining my time from other deserving staff – if you find yourself spending more time trying to manage an underperforming employee and it is taking away from your time nurturing other employees or responsibilities, over time, the risk may outweigh the reward
  • Is their lack of performance a hinderance on other staff and operations – Are your other valuable employees frequently unable to perform efficiently because someone in the chain is a constant weak link, missing deadlines, and standards of work? Your employees will let you know!
  • Are they playing the blame game instead of putting as much effort into improving their performance as I am – Of course we always must seek to understand the employee’s perspective, but at some point, you need to be honest with yourself about their willingness to change. If they are just blaming others and not putting forth effort to make changes, chances are, the situation will not improve, and you are just prolonging the inevitable

It takes confidence to make these tough decisions but asking yourself or your trusted advisors the impact questions can assure you are making the right decision!

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