managing people, payroll & time


6 Tips to Handle Bad Performance of Your Team

As an employer, you rely on your employees for a whole myriad of things—certainly not the least of which is keeping your business running smoothly! When employees begin to drop the ball, things can fall apart faster than you could possibly imagine. For many, this leaves employers at a loss as to what to do to get the organisation back on track.

When that happens, we're here to help. Here are some ways to address your team's poor performance:


  1. Understand What Goes into Performance


The performance of your employees involves two important components: motivation and ability.

The most motivated employee in the world won't be able to get the job done well without the ability. On the same line of thinking, the most capable employee in the world won't perform adequately without motivation.

Ability is defined as the aptitude, skills, resources, and training the employee brings to an organisation. Motivation comes from extrinsic sources, such as pay and benefits, as well as intrinsic sources, such as passion, commitment, and their mission.

If an employee isn't performing well, try to determine in which area they are lacking: ability or motivation? With this, you can make the proper adjustments to get them back on track.

  1. Addressing Ability Issues


If your employee’s trouble lies in their ability, consider whether or not they were ready for the position they were given. Did they get the position because of a hire or a promotion? Did they come on board with the right amount of experience and skill? Are they engaged in the work they're doing?

In some cases, the resources of your company can help in addressing these issues. For example, if the employee in question performed better in another position, find out what resources or support their previous role offered that they are now lacking. Are you able to make up for their lack of that resource, and will it help?

If that doesn’t work, additional steps could include providing them with additional training to fulfil their role, or change their role in your organisation. Pay attention to the aspects of their job they perform well in and try to capitalise on those skills.

  1. Keeping Employees Motivated


Addressing issues with motivation in your organisation can be trickier at times. Employers don't always have the funds to provide financial motivation (such as a raise) and need to find other means. This could be in certain benefits, such as flextime or the ability to work from home. Or, if you think their work is becoming sloppy because they've gotten bored with their role, try providing them with an additional challenge!

Other reasons employees can become sloppy in their work is the feeling of being underappreciated. Did this employee recently get denied a promotion? Did your benefits plan at your organisation change?

  1. Define Levels of Performance


If employees don't have a standard by which to measure their own performance, then they will have little to strive for. Set appropriate standards and goals for them, so they know where they stand. Define poor and excellent performance for your employees, so they can measure their own success and set their own goals.

Today, no one wants to guess what the boss wants. They want reasonable targets, fair instructions, and consistent feedback. Give that to them, and they'll give you their best work in return!

  1. Communicate with Employees About their Performance


You can't just stand by and watch, waiting for an employee's performance to improve without them knowing what's going on, and expect results. If an employee is performing poorly, discuss it with them. Let them know where they are falling short. Otherwise, if they don't know, you can't expect improvement.

  1. Know When to Fire


If possible, it's always best to retain an existing employee. Firing someone isn't only not fun, but it's also expensive to hire and train their replacement. But, when the time comes, it can in some cases be cheaper to replace an employee who can't or won’t improve their performance. This is especially true if their poor performance is affecting other employees and contributing to a negative office environment.

Always hold firing an employee as the last step. However, it's best to know when it's necessary. When the time comes, don't be afraid to do what needs to be done.

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