How to deal with a problematic employee
We’ve all known that employee who is under performing, been awkward with their workload, been disrespectful to other staff members. Whether you have managed them, or worked alongside them they can be a real issue.
Confronting them though can prove to be as difficult as they are. There’s no easy way to tell someone that they’re not working to the standard you expect or bringing down the people around them. Mainly because most of the time they don’t realise that they’re doing it!
In this blog I’m going to help you deal with a problematic employee tactfully.
Don’t ignore the issue
The first and most obvious tip I can give is to not ignore the issue. They aren’t going to miraculously stop being a problem if you just leave them be.
They’re going to bring the whole team down if they keep it up so you must confront the issue as soon as possible.
If they believe that they can continue to work this way without consequence things will only get worse.
Take action as soon as possible
The minute you’re told of this employee or as soon as you notice them you should take action. You don’t necessarily have to talk to them there and then but you should plan your course of action.
If you’re in a managerial role it’s your responsibility to deal with the problem at hand. Do not neglect your role. Not only will it reflect badly on you, but your team won’t think of you as someone who can help.
As I said, leaving the issue to fester will mean that things will only get worse.
Research the issue
Before you confront the employee you need to arm yourself with all of the facts available to you. It might just be an off chance that a complaint has come to you because of employee vengeance when in fact the person who has supposedly done something wrong has actually done nothing.
Don’t go into it with all guns blazing just because of something you have heard through the grape vine. You should have a complete understanding of the problem.
Speak to them
Once you know where the issue lies then take the employee aside and present them with the problem that you and the team have. If they are unaware then take them through what they have been doing wrong.
Give them clear examples of their problematic behaviour and then let them respond in their own time. They might have a valid reason for acting the way they have been so give them a chance to explain themselves.
Once you have addressed the problem discuss with them ways that they can start to improve. Ask them how you can help. Remember it’s your responsibility to take care of staff, so if someone is underperforming because of their doubts then you need to help them resolve the problem.
If there isn’t a resolution…
Unfortunately it isn’t always possible to resolve the issue and a termination has to take place. Firing someone is never easy but if the employee is too much of a problem then it has to happen. They’re going to bring down the productivity of your team and they’ll poorly reflect your business.