What Would You Do?

I came across an article (link below) on managing difficult employees and wondered ...

what kind of advice do you give managers when they come to you seeking guidance on how to handle a difficult employee? Would you use any of the tips in this article? If, so which ones?




  • 2 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • I thought all of the tips were pretty good. I have (unfortunately) had quite a bit of experience helping managers and supervisors deal with difficult employees, and I have used most of the tips in the article.

    I always tell them to focus on actions, not personalities. As we have all experienced at one time or another, some people tend to go through life making it more difficult for themselves and others. But you don't discipline a problem employee by focusing on their personality traits, because odds are these are deeply ingrained and they don't even realize that these traits may be causing issues.

    I'm also a huge advocate of treating [U]all[/U] employees respectfully. Problems should be dealt with one-on-one and not in front of the other employees. And never, ever address the issues with one employee in a group meeting with the hopes that the problem employee understands that you are addressing their behavior: they will always assume you are talking about someone else and not recognize that it is their actions or behaviors that need to change.

    I also like the one about clear consequences. I often have supervisors write employees up without specifying what the consequences will be if the employee doesn't rectify the situation. If there are clear consequences specified, then it makes it easier to proceed to the next disciplinary steps without any question as to what that step will be.
  • What cnghr said, but I would also add to act quickly. Don't the a small problem become a huge one just because you don't want to deal with it.

    I was disappointed to see so many willing to fire immediately without talking to the employee first. I have worked several places where an above average employee was an asset for years because someone resolved the real problem when it became an issue, and didn't just fire.
Sign In or Register to comment.