Problem employees are lurking in every workplace …
And wherever they are, you can be sure they're costing the organization plenty — in lowered morale, lost opportunities and decreased productivity. In fact, the price can be so high it's foolish to try to overlook or brush aside the problem. If you supervise an employee who has behavior or attitude problems, you need to take action — now!
What it is and How it Evolves: The hallmarks and causes of the bad attitude and unacceptable behavior
- Setting the bar: how to easily recognize a discrepancy between performance expectations and actual behavior
- Rare or repeating? How to know if a problem is a one-time occurrence or a chronic, disruptive behavior that demands your prompt attention!
- Backtracking from symptoms to causes: environmental factors that can lead to serious problems
- Trouble brewing? How astute managers spot performance and behavior problems at the start
- Are you part of the problem? Insightful self-analysis to give you an unbiased view of your own role
- How to pinpoint a difficult employee’s effect on coworkers and the organization and choose the appropriate course of action
- Are you actually rewarding poor behavior and performance? You may be shocked at the answer!
- Making your requirements clear: definitively communicating your expectations to an employee who’s falling short
- Searching for clues: how to gently question employees to uncover a problem’s cause
- When emotions run high: getting at the real truth when dealing with sensitive issues and people
- Are coworkers taking sides? How to get everyone’s perspective while remaining neutral and fair
- When the real problem’s not obvious: clever communication techniques to root out simmering conflicts and resentments
Taking Effective, Decisive Action: How to manage conflict and counsel for improved performance
- Eliminating the obvious: how to ensure a skill deficiency or lack of resources isn’t the source of trouble
- The team-play technique: a way to involve employees in forging a solution and guarantee they buy into the plan
- You set the pace: modeling a behavior standard employees respect and imitate
- Red flags that foreshadow serious communication gaps and misunderstandings
- Communicating despite conflict: smart ways to overcome anger, hostility and other emotions that can arise during counseling
- Personality conflict? How to deal with this often misunderstood problem and forge a truce in the most bitter relationships
- Coach or counsel? The difference between these two vital techniques and when to use each
- Positive and negative feedback: why you need to know both approaches and how to avoid common feedback blunders
- Downers, Gossips, Excuse Artists, Back-Stabbers, Soap Stars and many others! Assertive strategies for the commonly encountered problem types!
- Choosing your approach: an easy model to determine the best way to confront and correct an attitude problem
- How to stop a bad attitude from spreading like wildfire and affecting an entire workgroup!
- Proven counseling techniques to get results, even with long-standing, seemingly hopeless performance problems!
Using Firm, Assertive Tactics:How to discipline to correct performance problems
- Positive Intervention: how savvy managers use this technique to correct even complex performance issues
- Step-by-step discipline: a formal, progressive process every manager should know, practice and document every single time
- Can you handle it alone? Three situations always requiring outside intervention
- Bad attitude or just strongly opinionated? How to know when someone crosses the line
- Cover yourself! Specific documentation to legally protect you if your actions are questioned later
- An airtight warning: essential elements every warning (verbal or written) should contain
- Yes, you can discipline positively! How to do it while maintaining employee morale, loyalty and self-confidence
- Corrupt criticism: types of harmful criticism never to use when disciplining an employee
- Are you viewed as fair and consistent? How to avoid the perception you’re singling out certain employees for discipline
- Will training help? Situations in which employee training can overcome problems and how to measure its success
- A dose of realism: how to develop reasonable, reachable expectations in employee improvement plans
- The problem performer as ally: how to get any worker to buy in and strive for improved performance!
Taking the Last Resort: How to safely terminate problem employees when all else fails
- When to keep trying and when to give up: how to know when you’ve passed the point of no return
- Before blaming and finger-pointing: forcing employees to accept responsibility for the actions triggering formal termination processes
- When immediate termination is warranted and how to handle these explosive cases
- Softening the blow: how to terminate without zapping someone’s dignity and self-respect
- A tough task: how to keep emotions in check and maintain your focus and professionalism when you must terminate
- Don’t say this! Verbal termination mistakes that can land you in a lawyer’s office!
- A termination checklist: a valuable tool to ensure you’ve covered all of the details and followed a fair and complete process
- A warning about exceptions: what management experts say about deviating from established company practice and procedure
- A fail-safe legal shield: how to build a fully and legally defensible termination case
- Put it in writing! Documentation that will hold up to the toughest legal scrutiny
Recovery and Rebuilding Strategies: Forging ahead after change, upheaval and problem-solving
- Managing the "survivors:" how to prevent a termination from hurting the attitude and morale of coworkers.
- How to strengthen the self-respect and increase the value of your good performers … and avoid common traps that can harm their performance.
- The Open Communication model: how you can encourage higher morale and productivity with this tested and proven approach.