to deal with difficult employees when nothing else works
One of the most trying parts about being a business owner or
Human Resources manager is dealing with difficult employees.
This is difficult because often there is no perfect solution.
Many times, dealing with difficult employees becomes a chore
that managers or business owners just don’t know how to
handle. The longer a difficult employee continues to make problems,
the worse the workplace environment will become. Before becoming
overwhelmed with the thought of dealing with difficult employees,
consider the following tips to help you on your way.
Get to the bottom of the problem
One of the biggest mistakes an HR manager or small business
owner can make is to listen to rumors or telltale. Unfortunately
rumors are one of those problems the difficult employees often
start. This makes it hard to discover exactly who is causing
the problem, which is exactly what a difficult employee wants.
Instead of listening to gossip, try to find concrete evidence
of the problem. If this is not possible, be sure to speak directly
with all parties involved before deciding how to begin dealing
with the problem.
Acting quickly is especially important when dealing with difficult
employees. If you wait even a day or two to act on a problem,
the employees think that you accept the situation. They now think
they can get away with this bad behavior all the time. If a consistently
tardy employee shows up late to work again, do not wait until
the end of the shift or the next day to confront them. Instead
bring them into your office as soon as they arrive. This tells
them you are serious about the situation. Remember that this
also means sticking with your plans to submit an employee warning
form and doing so in a timely fashion.
Deal with the problem itself
As difficult as it may seem, it is important to attack the problem,
not the individual when dealing with difficult employees. Remember
when discussing the situation with an employee to continue to
reiterate why it is important that they do not behave in this
way. You may have to reinforce that being late makes the work
environment tense. Someone else has to cover for them. If they
are a constant gossip, you must remind them that spreading rumors
about other co-workers causes a poor work ethic that will is
obvious to customers or patrons.
Know when to ask for help dealing with difficult employees
For example, you may confront the same problem employee on several
occasions and they refuse to change their behavior. Likewise,
you may come up against an employee who becomes verbally abuse,
or begins berating you to other employees. In such cases, you
may need to step away from the employee and get help confronting
them. If you are an HR manager, this may be as easy as contacting
a higher authority, such as a Vice President or President of
the company. But if you are a small business owner, this may
be a bit more difficult to do. You are the final say in the company,
so finding help may require being more creative.
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