What Graduates Are Saying
(The following comments were taken from actual graduate evaluations)
I believe that most of the time, most people at work, do most of what they are supposed to do. They are cooperative, hardworking, and dependable. They take pride in their work, are punctual, and always conscious of quality. Some will even go beyond the call of duty and perform outside the realm of their responsibilities. I call these quality folks low maintenance employees.
There are also those whom we label problem or high maintenance employees. Although a minority, they are known to cause significant, ongoing problems mainly because of their negative attitudes and inappropriate behaviors. This type of employee offers countless reasons why they are not able to get the job done. When asked or directed to do something, many become argumentative, even defiant. They complain a lot, resist change, and point the finger at others when mistakes are made. This type of employee also spends much time badmouthing the company and bashing management.
High maintenance employees are the most difficult and challenging ones to deal with and largely contribute to a manager’s frustration and stress level, so the question is, how can we help high maintenance employees turn themselves in low maintenance ones?
The first step is to identify and understand the reason(s) why some employees don’t do what they are supposed to do. Managers first need to focus their attention on identifying the reason(s) for such lack of performance and negative behaviors. Secondly, managers need to work with the employee to remove the reason(s). When the root of any problem is identified then eliminated, the symptoms go away. This process takes time, patience, and the use of strategic and effective communication skills.
Let’s take a look at the following example….
Many years ago, I worked as a production supervisor at a manufacturing company. I was lucky to have such a good team, considering I inherited the department following the sudden resignation of my predecessor. Folks in my new department were, for the most part, performing to expectations.
I say for the most part because there was one employee in particular, whom I quickly identified as having many high maintenance characteristics. This employee was seen as uncooperative, intimidating, and used a lot of profanities when speaking with others. My observations were that he had very little to bring to the department other than criticism and complaints, always without solutions. This employee had developed a reputation for being a “crap disturber” and to me, seemed to be a very unhappy person. This clearly affected the overall morale in the department and I quickly realized that I could not let this weak link continue affecting the rest of the crew.
I had only been at my job for 6 weeks or so and felt somewhat nervous about addressing this issue with the employee but I felt it was my obligation to do so.
The following is a synopsis of what I did;
As managers and supervisors, we have the right to expect quality performance and appropriate behaviors from our employees. We are empowered to not only communicate those expectations but also to correct unacceptable levels of performance and inappropriate behaviors in our departments. The key to being successful at it, is knowing how to do it!
Since 1994, the MDG has partnered with organizations that are committed to develop their management and supervisory teams. The company is owned and operated by Robert Côtes, who brings over 30 years of training and employee development experience.
The MDG offers real training solutions to businesses whose objective is to develop and maintain positive and functional cultures. The way to achieve this is to train (re-train) and support Leadership teams as to;
There are no “shortcuts” or “quick fixes” when it comes to training. To achieve “best practices”, an organization should commit to a long term development strategy. That is precisely what the MDG offers; long term partnerships to affect lasting, positive change so as to ensure a return on your training investment.
Our clients reach their development objectives for 3 reasons. First, our learning system is relevant, dealing with today’s management issues, and contains both educational (theory) and training (application) sessions and combined, form a powerful experiential, “learn by doing” system. The second reason for our client’s success is the facilitator’s ability to engage participants and create a supportive, fun yet candid learning environment. The third and last reason is our client’s commitment to a long term development effort, for change is not an overnight process. It takes time.