Top 10 Reasons Your Employees Aren’t Performing

Ever scratch your head and wonder why your employees aren’t performing up to par?  Have you given them all the tools and training, and they’re still not getting the results you want?  The truth is, employers and leaders are often not listening or looking closely at the real opportunities and issues.  Here are the top 10 reasons employees are either falling behind the curve or being perceived as “less than”.

Office Kid w-Converse1. Employees don’t feel heard or appreciated by their employer. Consistent recognition is key.  This is commonly overlooked, not done on a continual basis, or with enough specificity to warrant a change in behavior from an employee.

2. The employee is unhappy at home or dealing with personal turmoil. Although there’s a fine line between knowing and understanding aspects of your employee’s personal life and becoming too involved; it’s imperative you have some idea of what goes on outside of work.  If an employee isn’t willing to share (be mindful there are laws that limit questions an employer can ask) simple fixes to the problem won’t be attained.  There are ways to create an environment where the employee feels safe and open to let their employer know what they need to give 100% while at work.

3. Trust. Too commonly, employees don’t trust their bosses.  They work from a place of fear and not commitment.  They fear losing their position, being viewed as a weak employee or not engaged in their jobs.   I often see leaders “ruling with an iron fist”.  They, too, are managing from a place of fear.  They fear if they seem vulnerable they will be taken advantage of by their employees.  This is false.  The complete opposite will happen once a manager learns the correct tools and techniques to lead their people.

4. Zero Inspiration. The truth is, we all want to feel inspired.  We want to feel we’re contributing to society and making a difference.  Since we spend the majority of our time at work, it’s critical we gain some sense of encouragement there.  The right culture is key to accomplishing this.  Culture goes far beyond your mission statement hanging on the wall.  Culture needs to be felt.  I always see this as the biggest opportunity in work environments.  Many leaders have no idea how to create and maintain this.

5. The leader is actually a follower. A great way to lose solid employees or maintain mediocre ones is to have a leader that’s actually a follower.  This is a person in a position of power who’s incapable of driving change, holding their employees accountable, or motivating and inspiring.  Employees can smell this a mile away.  If you’re not a strong leader, you’ll be left with employees who take advantage, or the good ones will leave.

6. Micromanaging your employee. No one likes to be put under a microscope.  If you feel the need to treat your employees like toddlers, expect them to act that way.  It takes work to train and develop your team to the point of letting them run their own desks.  It’s your responsibility to monitor, mentor and work to improve their results, but not make them feel as if they never had a shot.  When you’re constantly demanding a play-by-play, employees become discouraged and annoyed.  Learn when to step in and coach and when to leave them alone.

The bottom line is, your results are dependent on your people.

7. Unrealistic Expectations. I get it.  I’ve worked for one of the largest restaurant corporations in the world along with hundreds of individual business owners.  You need to produce, numbers need to get hit, people need to get paid, and the doors need to stay open.  Running a business is extremely stressful and demanding.  The bottom line is, your results are dependent on your people.  If you’re setting unrealistic goals or not setting your people up for success, you’ll only gain short-term production and lose great employees.  I’ve been around long enough to know that employers know when they’re doing this.  Stop it.

8. Company over-promises and under delivers. Sometimes this is done intentionally and sometimes it’s done by accident.  Employers do want to support their employees but may not have the means at the time, or ability and tools to develop them as they intended.  Be mindful of your verbiage when delivering promises to your employees.  If you can’t, don’t.

9. Hostile work environments. Toxic work environments are like cancer.  They can spread quickly if not addressed and taken care of.  When employees feel on guard and not supported by either their peers or upper management, chaos and poor results are destined.  Hostile work environments come in all different shapes and sizes, from not being properly equipped to bad energy from the staff and management.

10. You’re just a bad boss. This isn’t a judgment.  Management and leadership isn’t for everyone.  Sometimes we’re put in positions of power not because we’re good at growing and developing others, but because we’re good at our craft.  If you sense leading is not for you, there’s always the option to delegate it and hire the right people to assist.  The most important thing is making sure your team feels important, understood and excited to be working for you. If you don’t believe you can accomplish that, it’s time to find someone who can.

Need more help in these areas?  For more in-depth coaching please contact me.

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