Managers: Do You “Cheat” Your Employees?

You read that headline correctly. Some managers do cheat employees.  Today’s interview with Human Resources Manager, Shannon Costill, offers more insight into this common, yet avoidable managerial leak.

In your opinion, how often do managers turn a blind eye to bad behavior or poor performance?

More often than they should. This is most common when the manager is very busy with other work. It can be hard to address or recognize performance issues when the manager’s time is spread too thin.  That is why it is so important to have weekly check-ins with all employees. Another common reason is lack of training with the manager on how to coach employees – they could be new to a managerial role or simply uncomfortable with confrontation.

What are the repercussions of managers assigning praise for mediocre work?

The real expectations are not clear and the workers believe they are reaching performance expectations. This creates a deflated expectation of performance and results.  The result is complacent workers and the company not meeting production goals. Employees should be recognized for good work performance and challenged to continually enhance it.

How would you advise managers to handle employees who exhibit lackluster work performance?

Talk to them! Open communication is key to getting to the root of the issue. There could be interoffice conflicts, problems at home, challenges with work-life balance, or it could be that the employee is simply not engaged at work.  Another point to take into consideration is the length of time the employee has been working for the company.  If the employee had previously been meeting expectations and has declined, it’s important to examine why this could be happening.

What other advice can you offer as it relates to management?

Stay in communication with your direct reports weekly. Have a quick 10-15 minute check-in regarding priorities, pat them on the back for things they are doing well, and coach them in areas needing improvement.

Manager AdviceShannon Costill graduated from Millersville University with a BA in Psychology. She has worked in recruiting, benefits, workers compensation, unemployment compensation, and all HR related duties for the past 8 years. Shannon earned her PHR in 2007 and is a member of SHRM and the Central PA HRP.

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