American Painting Contractor Magazine


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AMERICAN PAINTING CONTRACTOR • June 2015 17 So what are the best management prac- tices for dealing with difficult employees? If they perform and just get on everyone's nerves, isolate them. If necessary, have them start at a different time. Tell them they are wonderful, and get as much mileage out of them for as long as you can. But when it is time, let them go. Enforce the rules and have a zero toler- ance approach. Protect them from them- selves and ensure that the situation does not get worse. Maintaining a disciplined approach might allow you to save them. Being Mr. Nice Guy is only going to ensure their ultimate termination. Document unacceptable behavior and give them a copy. Establish evidence of poor work history and put it in writing. Yes, this is the type of employee who will sue you. Have the tough conversations, and let them know their behavior is not accept- able. Allowing the person's behavior to continue over and over sets a pattern of acceptance. Make it clear they need to get their act together and you will not allow this to continue. Look for their response and make sure they own their part of the deal when you have a conversation. • Does the person own his or her part? Believe it or not, some people do not understand or believe they have a problem. If the employee offers excus- es or blames circumstances or others, then he or she is not going to change. • Do they understand that if their behavior continues, they will ultimate- ly lose their job? It can be amazing that an employee can complain about his or her job, not get along with the boss and ultimately think all is going to be OK. It is also amazing that manage- ment has not made it clear that if the behavior continues, the person will lose his or her job. Not getting along with the boss is a career path that ulti- mately leads to dismissal. • Before starting the conversation, make sure you have a clear understanding of what behavior you would want. If by some miracle he or she changed overnight, what would that behavior look like? During your conversation, make sure you reach an agreement as to what behavior you expect. There needs to be a clear understanding of the prob- lem and an acknowledgement that he or she will do something different. Termination is not such a bad thing. It allows you and the employee to start over. It is much better than tolerating the behavior for years and then the behavior is so engrained in the person that he or she cannot change or is too old to easily find a job. APC Monroe Porter is president of PROOF Management Consultants, a company spe- cializing in seminars and business consult- ing for contractors. He is also founder of PROSULT Networking Groups, developed to help noncompeting contractors. He can be reached at (800) 864-0284 or mon- For more information, visit his website at Sound Business Management Features 3M adhesive technology for protection from paint bleed and clean removal ScotchBlue ™ Painter's Tape with Advanced Edge-Lock ™ Paint Line Protector for Delicate Surfaces © 3M 2015. All rights reserved. 3M, Edge-Lock, ScotchBlue and the BLUE color of the tape are trademarks of 3M. Pull Off a Better Paint Job

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