During a discussion on the VoiceAmerica Internet radio program “A Great Place to Work,” Roth Staffing Companies President & COO Adam Roth explained that leaders must establish a workplace culture of engagement and ongoing communication in order to efficiently manage one of the most common business concerns—employee underperformance.
Co-hosts Curt Coffman, bestselling author of First, Break All the Rules, Follow This Path, and Culture Eats Strategy for Lunch, and Dr. Kathie Sorensen, a well-known Human Capacity and people management expert, delved into the topic and described the challenges that managers face regarding underperforming employees on an episode titled “No Results? What Do I Do Now?”.
At the start of the show, Roth admitted that even the first step in addressing potentially undesirable employee performance—defining the term ‘underperformance’—is no simple task. “It’s an imperfect science,” he claimed. “It’s an easy call [for managers] when someone isn’t putting forth the effort to be successful. It’s much harder when people are working hard to succeed. Do you give them more time to prove themselves?”
Roth answered his query later in the program when he stated that sometimes it’s best to give employees more time to get their bearings and ramp up to success, while in other situations it is best to admit that the coworker is just not the best person to fulfill his or her current role. The way to choose the correct path, he said, is to openly communicate with the employee from day one so performance rarely becomes an issue.
“I hate the idea of the formal first 90-day review,” stated Roth. Communication should be ongoing throughout the interview process, the on-boarding process, while you are establishing desired outcomes with the new employee, etc… Your employee should know exactly what their role is and what is expected of them coming into the organization. It shouldn’t just be reviewed [on a 90-day timeline]”.
Coffman and Dr. Sorensen agreed, claiming that the most engaged workplaces are supportive and highly communicative from the start. “Most great cultures rally around new coworkers,” described Dr. Sorensen. “They want to teach and help [new coworkers]. It’s part of that indoctrination into that great culture.”
Roth explained that this culture of workplace engagement both helps position employees for success and prompts them to proactively take accountability for their actions. “[Employees approaching management to discuss their performance] show that they care. When they are accountable for their own actions and results and they are raising those questions on their own because they want to be successful, it shows their commitment and that’s a fun conversation to have from a management perspective! Everyone is more invested in the outcome and success because the employees care about their job and the company.”
Dr. Sorensen wrapped up the topic by commenting that organizations should be dedicated to collaborating about performance levels so these conversations become a positive experience. “It should be a cooperative process, not a competitive process. ‘Performance reviews’ should be about [managers and employees] plotting together on how to get to the next level.”
Dr. Sorensen and Coffman co-host “A Great Place to Work” every Friday morning at 11:00 AM Pacific Time. Their audience typically consists of business leaders and Fortune 500 companies that promote the show as a key component of leadership development and employee training programs.
Listen to “No Results? What Do I Do Now?” at http://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/68543/no-results-what-do-i-do-now.
About Roth Staffing Companies, L.P.
Roth Staffing Companies is the only large staffing company to receive all of the industry’s most prestigious honors in one year including Staffing Industry Analysts’ “Best Staffing Firms to Work For” and “Best Staffing Firms to Temp/Contract For”, Inavero’s “Best of Staffing® – Client” and “Best of Staffing® – Talent”, and the highest award presented by the American Staffing Association’s VOICE Awards. Roth Staffing remains the only staffing firm ever ranked #1 on the Inc. 500 list of fastest-growing, privately-owned companies.
Roth Staffing is a family of full-service business lines providing temporary, temporary-to-hire, and direct hire placements from more than 100 branch offices and dozens of on-premise locations in 21 states and the District of Columbia: Ultimate Staffing Services specializes in staffing for administrative, clerical, customer service and manufacturing & production positions; Ledgent Finance & Accounting specializes in professional staffing services including the placement of finance and accounting professionals; Ledgent Technology & Engineering specializes in technology and engineering placements; Adams & Martin Group specializes in legal staffing, project management and attorney search; and One Squared Managed Solutions manages MSP and VMS solutions for large contingent workforce programs.
Please visit our website at www.rothstaffing.com for more information or call (714) 939-8600.