7 Reasons Why Workers Do Not Perform

By Drew Stevens, Ph.D.

With 18 years of business management experience and five as a professional speaker and trainer I have seen my share of non performing workers. Many ask why this is so and in the past few years my list of 20 is now down to a crucial seven. Here are the reasons why workers do not perform and my quick reply to illicit better behavior.

1)    Employee doesn’t know what’s expected of him/her.
As an employer it is your responsibility to set goals, objectives and time frames, failure to do so will result in lack of motivation and job interest. To begin these quests review both the employee Job Description and Company Policies and Procedures. These two documents set the standards upon which you will judge behavior for performance.

2)    Employee doesn’t have the necessary skills.
Companies do not train their employees, and this leads to unproductively and job dissatisfaction,. Employees must be accountable for their respective tasks yet they must be trained so that there is comfort and familiarity with the job. Begin a program so that employees will not “learn by doing” and watch the productivity increase.

3)    Employee doesn’t understand there’s a negative consequence for the behavior.
Adults are children in big clothes. It is your responsibility as the manager or business owner to hold employees accountable to negative behavior. Similar to the child that breaks a curfew or is disrespectful you must provide a negative consequence. Failure to do so leads to continued behavior and stress to you.

4)    Employee’s positive behaviors are ignored/punished.
We go to church and are taught, “It is Right to Give Thanks and Praise”, athletes congratulate and console each other during strike outs, interceptions, failed opportunities, your children are taught to say “please” and “thank you” however when we get to work it is a kaleidoscope of disrespect, displeasure and disagreement. Take some advice from my mentor Dale Carnegie and Win Friends and Influence People; make someone feel important by giving them something to live up to, and finally don’t criticize, condemn or complain, simply, give honest and sincere appreciation.

5)    Employee’s ability to do the work is hindered by a process that’s not working.
Where and when possible clear a path to success. Try to eliminate as much bureaucracy as possible by empowering the worker to get the job done in the most efficient and effective manner.

6)    Employee is not motivated to do the work.
Workers especially those whose personality lends itself for interaction love challenges and like to take on risk. Know the type of employee that you have by watching body language and verbal skills. There are those that will bore easy. Give them tasks that will challenge their thinking so that they can gain more interest.

7)    Employee has personal problems that are interfering with his/her work.
Present society has all of us dealing with a myriad of personal issues. Family illnesses, death and quite possible loss of work due to the current economic environment has taken its toll. Do not play psychiatrist but do be compassionate to the issues of others. Attention to detail and empathy may lead to long term commitment down the road.


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