As a manager, you’re responsible for ensuring your team is performing to the best of its ability. But what happens when one or two of your underperforming Employee? It’s not always as simple as just pointing out their shortcomings and telling them to get better.
In fact, there are many ways to address employee performance issues without making anyone feel like they’re being reprimanded. Here are some tips for handling underperforming workers in a way that will help both parties succeed:
Hold regular check-ins
If you want to improve your employee retention, make sure that you hold regular check-ins with each of your employees. This will allow them to tell you about any issues or concerns they may have without worrying about whether or not it’s okay for them to share those things with their manager.
When holding these check-ins, be sure that all parties understand what the meeting is for and what outcome they’re aiming for.
Give clear instructions and feedback
When you give feedback to an employee who is underperforming, it’s important to be clear and specific. Make sure you explain what you want from him or her and how you expect that behavior to look in practice.
Don’t make a vague statement like, “You need to get better at your job.” Instead, focus on a specific area where he or she needs improvement—for example: “When writing emails to clients, try using shorter sentences instead of long paragraphs. Doing so will make it easier for clients to read and understand your point more quickly.”
Try not to take their performance personally
As a manager, it’s easy to feel personally responsible for the performance of your employees. After all, they’re working under your watchful eye and you’ve got to be able to sleep at night knowing that everything is in order.
However, when an employee isn’t performing up to the mark it’s important not to take this as a reflection on yourself or your management style.
Start by asking questions instead of making accusations
As you begin to address the issues in your team, remember that your goal is not to lay blame or assign blame. Instead, focus on helping the employees improve their performance and supporting them in their efforts.
One of the best ways to show this support is by asking open-ended questions that will help you understand their perspective on what’s happening in their role.
If you’ve identified a problem employee in your workplace, try to find out what’s causing their performance issues. You may be able to help them improve, or at least give them advice on how they can address the issue.