It is the same old complaint repeatedly, the rant of the frustrated manager. Can you guess what managers are outraged about? Lazy employees, that’s what. Is it really the employees fault or should some of the blame fall on the shoulders of the manager? If you are a manager, you need to ask yourself this question. Are you doing everything you can to motivate your employees? Are your employees following your lead or blazing their own path towards an unproductive workday?
The problem is that most managers see following up with employees as micro managing. Managers do not like to be micro managed, so they in turn do not want to micro manage their staff. This thinking typically gives their employees more leeway than some employees can handle. Managers who hate micro managing prefer to call their management style “laid back” or “hands off”. This style of management works for some but not others. Remember, no two employees are alike.
Not all employees are slackers; some employees are perfectly capable of performing at or above standards without the boss breathing down their neck. These tips are for those employees who need a little push in the right direction.
Here are five things you can do right now to motivate that less than stellar employee:
- Put together a list of goals for the employee, it can something as simple as “complete all your filing by Friday of every week” or “Respond to all emails by the end of the day”. You have to make the employee accountable for their lackluster performance.
- Check in with your employee at least once a week to see how things are going; ask if they need anything, if they are having any work issues, etc. The check in does not have to be anything long and drawn out, just stop by their cubicle or office for an informal quick chat.
- Make sure you remember to tell praise your employee when they have met a deadline or done something beyond their normal job requirements. Encouragement is important to employees.
- Give the employee a departmental project to complete. Accountability is what we are striving for with this tip.
- Ask for their input on how to improve a process within the department. Employees like to feel included and considered part of the team.
Employees typically perform better when they are accountable for their actions and when they are encouraged to do a good job. Do not give up on your lazy employee just yet, sometimes all it takes is a shift in your approach. You see, some employees need to be micro managed.