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How To Deal With Problem Employees

Managing employees is a key part in running a small business.  As the leader of your team you must work with your employees to set clear goals and help them to achieve them within a reasonable time.  Even though you feel like you are a great boss, there is always going to be a problem employee.  The real test of you as an employer is how you deal with these problem employees.

A good organization has a huge diversity in the people that work there.  With that you get a wide variety of personalities and you have to strike a balance to keep everything moving smoothly.

Listed below are some steps that can help you maintain poise and deal with difficult employees in a much better way:

1. Never avoid difficult employees:

This is one common mistake that most of the employers do today. They form a wrong notion in their minds that ignoring the problem employee is the only solution to deal with them. However they do not understand that this assumes a very large proportion when the employee starts turning all the more difficult due to prolonged ignorance from his employer.

2. Step in immediately if needed:

As a manager, the employer is responsible for the development of all his employees, whether problematic or non- problematic. As soon as an employee reacts negatively to a particular situation, the manager should take up ownership and talk to the concerned employee and understand if he has any problems. The employee might be creating problems at the workplace because he is not satisfied about some aspect. It is the role of the employer to understand what worries him and take corrective action if required to bring the employee back on track.

3. One-on-one discussions:

If the employee creates repetitive problems at the office, then the employer has to have a conversation with him in private and explain about this unacceptable behavior at office. There are two ways that the employee might react during this conversation. One is, he might simply agree that he has been creating problems. Here, resolution is simple. The manager can talk out to the employee and explain that his negative reactions have been creating wrong influences on other employees as well and he can help the employee to change.

The second scenario is slightly difficult. Here the employee might feign ignorance of his actions and may never accept that he was a problem employee throughout. At this juncture, the employer has to give enough evidences to prove the employee’s strange behavior at times and explain with proof that the employee needs to correct himself for the mutual benefit of the company as well as for the employee himself. Such frequent private discussions are sure to bring about a personality change in the problem employee.

4. Helping the problem employee to recoup:

This is the main role of the employer. Discussions are going to be fruitless unless an action plan is implemented to correct the employee’s attitude. As a manager, the employer is the best person to understand if the employee is need of some training. He can accordingly connect with the HR department and ensure that the employee participates in as many training programs as possible so that he regroups himself quickly and starts contributing once again to his process.

5. Termination is the last resort:

A common mistake that most of the employers do today is to terminate the problem employees without giving him any chance to prove himself and without taking any effort to correct him as a manager. This is because the employers always want to work in their comfort zones and do not have the required patience to deal with these problem employees. However the correct approach would be having frequent conversations with the employee, enrolling him in training programs, monitoring his progress frequently, helping him when he is finding difficulty and finally making him fit for the job again. Termination is a step that must be taken only for employees who have serious attitude problems and who cannot be corrected through counseling or training programs.

If the above steps are followed diligently, employers will be in a better position to handle problem employees. It is all about understanding that an organization is bound to have different types of employees. A good leadership is all about finding the correct balance.

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