How to Deal with Difficult Employees & Improve Workplace Performance
A difficult employee is someone who does not behave responsibly or professionally in the workplace. These employees can negatively influence others and undermine the workplace culture. Working effectively with these employees can be one of the biggest challenges business owners and managers face.
When employee difficulties become a problem, their failures need to be addressed quickly and decisively so as not to undermine morale and efficiency.
Having difficult employees at a business can be an issue for managers and business owners. Sometimes, the best solution is not to fire them.
Business owners and managers must demonstrate leadership, deal directly with difficult employees, discuss behavior and performance issues, and develop a clear problem-solving plan.
They should keep track of the progress of difficult employees to see if they’re improving.
Types of Difficult Employees
1. The overconfident worker
This type of difficult employee is mostly productive, but usually with a few shortcomings. This includes coming late to meetings and never apologizing, not paying enough attention during the meeting, etc.
This type of employee knows they are good at what they do and want others to know, which leads to an overconfident attitude in the workplace.
Ignoring the problem for a long time may set a bad example and lead to even more complicated issues with time.
2. One who avoids responsibility
Employees who refuse to take responsibility when something goes wrong, be it by blaming others or making excuses, can cause problems.
This will make them difficult to work within the long run. Taking responsibility for failures is an essential part of making sure they don’t happen again.
3. The know it all
This employee feels like they have done and seen everything. They tend to reject other people’s ideas because they feel theirs is the best, interrupt others in meetings, and tend to “explain” things outside of others area of expertise.
4. The lazy employee
This employee always feels reluctant and pessimistic about new tasks. This hinders the progressiveness of the business. They often try and avoid work and do as little as possible.
Ways of Dealing with Difficult Employees
Here are a few things business managers and owners should do when they have a problematic employee.
1. Keep a record
When you have issues with a problematic employee, it’s best to keep a record of whatever they have done wrong through a journal. This will help the manager or business owner know what to work on when dealing with a difficult employee.
2. Be attentive
The best managers and business owners always know when an employee is not behaving as they should. By paying attention, the problem can be solved because you will have an idea of any underlying issues.
3. Give feedback about employee’s behavior
Giving the employee feedback and telling them where they need to improve will help them know what they’re doing wrong and help them behave differently.
This kind of feedback is called constrictive criticism and is far more productive than destructive criticism. Constructive Criticism vs Destructive Criticism looks at the issue at hand and what can be done to address it, versus crushing the employee’s confidence and offering no real solution.
4. Be consistent with employee expectations
If you say you’re not okay with a particular behavior, then be consistent and address it immediately. Set a standard and stand by it.
5. Set consequences for bad behavior
Having consequences for unacceptable employee behavior will help reduce the occurrences of it.
6. Critique the behavior but not the employee
It’s important not to make the conversation too personal or emotional. The ultimate goal is to find a solution to the problem, not provoke confrontation.
It’s crucial to focus the attention on the employee’s inappropriate or undesirable behavior and talk about the undesirable behavior rather than attacking them personally.
10 Tips to Improve Workplace Performance
1. Discover the issue
If an employee isn’t performing up to par, it’s crucial not to pass judgment on them too quickly. Always begin by determining the source of the performance issue.
2. Invest in professional growth and training
It’s critical to remember that investing in training and professional development is a continuous effort. When acquiring new staff, many firms devote special attention to training, but they make the mistake of assuming it’s a one-time event.
On the contrary, in today’s digital world, personnel must continue to improve their skills and expertise.
3. Set specific goals and objectives
What are the expected outcomes, goals, and timelines from your team? What role do they play in achieving your organization’s goals? The key to controlling expectations is effective communication.
4. Enhance the corporate culture
Employees that are satisfied perform better and naturally create a better corporate culture. Productivity and creativity are boosted by a healthy, happy workplace where individuals are actively involved in decision-making and are not intimidated by their superiors.
5. Improve the process of acquiring new staff
The importance of successfully recruiting new employees is frequently overlooked. Effective recruitment processes ensure that employees are productive and rapidly adapt to their new work environment.
6. Put an end to micromanaging
Managers should be good coaches. Good managers know how to delegate while still being available for advice, inquiries, and direction. However, many managers tend to micromanage.
These managers are control freaks who make unreasonable demands on their employees. Employee inventiveness and proactivity – two attributes that contribute greatly to greater productivity and performance – are stifled by their control concerns.
7. Always celebrate employee successes
Employees loved to be praised! This helps motivate employees to do even better at their jobs.
8. Encourage teamwork
Encouraging teamwork amongst staff will improve productivity and reduce conflicts.
9. Use the right tools
Using the right tools will lead to a great working environment, which improves workplace performance. Some examples include personal development plans, real-time feedback, and a wellbeing scheme.
10. Advocate interdepartmental communication
Where this communication exists, the whole departments of the business and staff will work better as a whole, which helps to improve productivity.
Patience and being sensitive are key when managing employees. A manager who is not patient or sensitive in relations with members of staff will have difficulty.
Empire Resume Will Help You Get Hired
We have greater than a 97% success rate landing our clients’ interviews!