#2 Posted: 2 Jun 2006 03:39
If the described behavior is affecting your company's performance, then it is most important that you address the issue with your employee. If the behavior is not impacting performance, then consider revising your procedures. Employees often find the "route of least resistance" and you should ask yourself why.
If you decide this is a performance issue, here are some tips for handling the situation:
1. Document the issue
2. Write down your desired outcome that would resolve the issue
3. Write down the points you'll need to make to achieve your desired outcome
4. Write down the possible objections and how you will overcome them
5. Arrange a meeting with the employee
6. Keep it non-confrontational, focus on the performance issue to hand and state the required improvement in performance clearly
7. Ask the employee how they will address their performance
8. Set and agree a goal and time for improvement
9. Meet with the employee again, if the employee has met the performance goal, congratulate them. (This is not the time to bring up more/other issues that may have arisen - deal with them using the above process).
10. If the employee has not met with your goals for improvement, consider taking disciplinary action. This is a last resort and should be taken only after listening carefully to your employee's reasons for not meeting the required performance level. Consult with your employer or HR department for further guidelines.
In my experience it is better to address performance issues early; most can be resolved. Prior planning is essential and will determine your level of success.
Ian Miller, Editor