Nearly every manager across the global business landscape will have had experience of dealing with a troublesome employee. The problem for most managers is that they spend a lot of energy on this single member of their team. In addition, there is the risk of that one employee’s behaviour rubbing off on others in the team.
What can you do as a manager to deal with the problem effectively?
Find out what the problem is first
One common mistake that many managers make is to simply reprimand the troublesome employee for their poor behaviour. While this is naturally important for staff discipline, doing this alone will not solve the problem. You also need to speak with them privately and listen to what they have to say about what is happening to find the root cause.
Try to help them
Once you know what the underlying issue is, the next step is to offer support and help. What this entails will differ depending on the nature of the issue itself.
Sometimes, you may find it hard to get them to admit what is really going on – this can be especially true if you suspect that drugs or alcohol are behind their behaviour. If you think that this may be the case, then drugs testing is worthwhile here to give hard evidence of your suspicions. Find a drugs testing company online with its own drug testing lab so that you can get the results back quickly.
Document what is happening
It is highly advised to make written documentation of what is happening with specific details of each incident. This will be essential if you decide to move into more formal company procedures around their poor conduct. Keep a note of any meetings you have along with what is said or agreed on for future reference.
Make clear what the consequences are
When you are still at a more informal stage of merely speaking to them about their behaviour, you should also make it clear what will happen if it continues. While listening and offering help is vital, the employee needs to know what will happen if they do not do their part. Once you have done this, be sure to stick to what you say and move into formal disciplinary processes if needed.
Sometimes, you do all you can to help and support a bad employee, but they cannot change or simply will not. If you get to the end of the formal disciplinary process and they still exhibit the behaviour that is causing problems, then you have to let them go. Holding on to a troublesome member of staff is simply not worth it for the effect that it could have on your whole team.
Action is key
What should be clear from our guide above is that professional, clear action is key. Do not just moan about them to other staff members or put up with what is going on to avoid conflict. By taking action, you will hopefully help them to turn their behaviour around and certainly help to protect your whole business.