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How to manage poor-performing employees

employee performance

Human capital is often the biggest cost to a business. Employees must perform at their best for your business to succeed. But what if your staff are letting you down, day after day? It’s time to start seeing your staff as assets rather than liabilities.

Here are the dos and don’ts for getting the best out of your staff;


  • Micromanage – Give your staff the space they need to perform their job at their best and trust that they will achieve results without your checking over their shoulder every second.
  • Nag – If staff know what time they are expected to arrive at work and they are consistently late, nagging at them every day won’t help. The problem is much bigger than tardiness. If they are late for work every day, they are likely not doing very much at work anyways. Your staff are not finding the work fulfilling. Address the bigger problem of work culture.


  • Empower your staff by making your success their success. For example, giving them shares in the company so that the better the company performs, the more money staff make.
  • Reward the process not the result. For example, Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google says “be okay with failure and reward effort, not outcomes.”
  • Encourage innovation by giving staff more freedom and less regiment.
  • Reward change, not status quo.
  • Ask your staff what would make them love to come to work every day. It might be something small like an expresso machine. Make the change.
  • If a staff member is always late, don’t shout at them for their tardiness, and make work a place they want to come to. If you do this, they will show up early.
  • Create a positive work culture by having staff lunches, dinners, tournaments, and fun activities. Etc.
  • Cut the work week from 5 days to 4 without a drop in wages and watch productivity go through the roof.
  • Put a pool table and a trampoline in the breakout space and encourage staff to have fun and socialise on their breaks.
  • Take your staff on a hike in the bush every month.

Sometimes though, an employee might just be a bad fit for your organisation. If you have tried everything but performance does not improve it may be time for your employee to leave the organisation.

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