The principle of the three pillars and other secrets of working with difficult employees
The success of the company largely depends on the personality of the head, his ability to manage employees and make the right decisions. Is there a single recipe that allows anyone to learn how to achieve super results from their subordinates?
Each manager chooses his own style of management and keeps secret the secrets of working with problematic employees. However, there is a set of basic problems that every manager faces – they should be considered in more detail.
The Right Influence on Personnel, or the Three Pillars Principle
One of the principles of a successful leader’s impact on his subordinates is a combination of three pillars: high professionalism, proper delegation of authority, and correct communication with subordinates. By competently combining these three components, a successful leader can increase the productivity of his subordinates and improve his own management skills.
Every manager of the management level needs to have a high professional status in order to talk to his subordinates in the same language and understand the specifics of the business for the correct setting of goals and tasks. The manager must keep his hand on the pulse, find and be able to apply new technologies in business management in order to increase the competitiveness of the company. It is practically impossible to lead the direction, having weak expertise in it, – in this case work efficiency will decrease, and it will be much more difficult to earn credibility among the subordinates.
The second of the pillars of successful employee management is delegation of authority – a management tool suitable for managers who have leadership qualities and are not afraid to delegate the necessary powers to solve certain problems to their subordinates. Delegation is effective only if the manager is able to select the right employee with the right qualifications. Delegating authority to an interested employee with a lack of experience or to a specialist with higher competence and, accordingly, a lack of motivation in both cases poses a threat to the quality of performance of a task.
It is equally important to build the right relationship with your subordinates. Constant communication and timely feedback are irreplaceable tools of management, allowing to influence positively quality of work, to achieve building of effective system of interaction between subordinates, to increase their motivation. The risk of incorrect use of feedback is as great as the potential positive effect. A manager is required to have life experience and managerial wisdom to comprehend the received information and its further use. Incorrect application of feedback can have significant negative consequences in the case of switching to personalities, using unconstructive criticism, etc.
Not every manager has all three components equally well developed, usually one of the competencies prevails. It happens that professionalism is high and relations in the team are positive, but there are big problems with delegation of authority. The manager ties up all the processes on himself, he is afraid to let the problem go, to entrust the task performance to another employee completely, leaving for himself only the control of reference points. As a result, he either takes the task on himself, or constantly interferes in the process with excessive advice and instructions, thus distracting the employee from his work. Learning to effectively manage employees is not easy – it requires years of practice, constant improvement of his professionalism, knowledge of psychology.
Own example. What manager – so and subordinates
These words can often be heard from the employees. Indeed, if the head works with his hands down, spends a lot of time in the smoking room, and is late for work, why his staff should behave otherwise? The team senses subtly the attitude of the head to work and, observing the lack of motivation and commitment to work on his part, quickly loses interest in the common cause. Managing such employees becomes much more difficult: when the “fuse” is gone, there is only one type of motivation – the material, which is not always able to keep employees in the company. As soon as a frustrated employee is offered a higher salary at another company, he will leave without thinking.
The personality of the manager with whom we have to work is important in the workplace. We want to see a specialist who will help us discover new professional facets, move to a new career level, give valuable advice. Psychological component is also important for us – we want understanding, tactful attitude and individual approach to our person.
Thus, every manager must understand in his daily work that dozens and hundreds of eyes are watching him, who want to see him as a role model. And for this it is not necessarily to come to work before their subordinates or quit smoking – it is much more important to show a professional attitude to their responsibilities, to improve their own skills, employee training, a lot of time to motivate staff, to build a comfortable climate in the team. Do not demand from your subordinates to comply with the conditions that you yourself would violate every day – the golden rule of a successful manager. All that remains is to follow it faithfully.
Advice and orders, rewards and punishments
Every day a manager gives dozens of instructions aimed at the successful development of the business. They can be conveyed by different methods, depending on the management style that the manager preaches in his work. From the outside it may seem that the directive method of management is the easiest: you give an order and you get the result. But practice tells the opposite – in fact, the directive method of management alone is not always justified. In the search for the optimal tools a manager has to experiment from persuasion, stewardship, and clarification to rigid methods of communicating information to employees. The complexity of the situation is that the choice of management method depends not only on the specifics of the company’s business, the function your department is responsible for, but also on the individual characteristics of each employee. For someone the directive style of management will be unacceptable, and someone will be able to work effectively only from under the stick.
The same dilemma is faced when choosing the optimal ratio of such methods of management as rewards and punishments. Punishment of employees is more often used in companies with an authoritarian management style, where the work environment has a high degree of toxicity due to high levels of stress. In such organizations, employees think more about preserving their jobs rather than about how to innovate the work process and raise its efficiency. This management approach occasionally yields positive results, but only in the short term. That’s why more and more managers are either using rewarding practices to create healthy competition within the team or sticking to the classic “carrot and stick.
The reason for the drop in productivity of the company can be both the wrong managerial decisions, and the “wrong” employees. The so-called “debilitating” employees are those who negatively affect the overall mood of the team. Therefore, the overall performance of other employees can be greatly reduced as a result of their influence. The main paradox is that such an employee can work super efficiently himself, but at the same time he can frustrate the rest of the team. In most cases, he does not do it on purpose, himself does not notice the negative impact in the team. Such employees, for example, can destroy the working atmosphere by constant partying, spreading gossip and defeatism in the company, thus demotivating their colleagues.
What to do if your company is experiencing such a situation: eliminate or control? Obviously, the first option is not the best solution to the problem, because you will not only lose an effective employee, but also cause a lot of questions within the team. Most managers go the way of explanatory conversations, in which they explain to the person how his excessive activity in this or that direction is detrimental to the company. Often a couple of these conversations are enough for a person to begin to control his behavior and try to critically assess himself from the outside. Of course, you won’t be able to fundamentally change the behavior of an employee in a week, but recognition of his merits for the company, an individual approach and constant “educational work” will do the trick over time and minimize the risks associated with his behavior.
If an employee is not in contact, ignores the supervisor’s comments and continues to be “disruptive,” then his motivation to work in the company is likely to be low. In this case, it makes sense to start looking for an equivalent replacement, otherwise the harm from such a specialist will many times outweigh the benefit.
Win through recognition or lose through rejection?
When the team comes to a new leader, there are two ways forward: the team will either accept it or reject it. In this case, the vector of movement will be clear in the next 2-3 months, depending on the level of responsibility of the head and the number of staff. Many managers begin their work with the formation of a new staff – they recruit new staff or come right away with their team. This is due not so much to the manager’s fear of not getting used to the new team, as to the need to quickly perform the tasks assigned to them. Very rarely does the previous manager leave a legacy in the form of a professional and cohesive team, ready to start solving complex business problems, which, moreover, will share the management style of the new manager. However, a professional manager will not be cut off and will certainly evaluate the current team, will try to find a common language with the strongest employees, will motivate them to continue working in the company under his leadership. This process is mutual and painful for both parties. There have been cases where employees themselves “ran away” from the new manager, abandoning attempts to find common ground. In order to avoid unnecessary sacrifices, the company and the manager must carefully evaluate the situation, to understand how much their views on business methods and corporate culture coincide, otherwise the attempt to increase the effectiveness of the work of a department by attracting a new manager can lead to long-term problems on all levels of management.
How to deal with subordinates who don’t want to respect you
Long gone are the years when employees could unconditionally tolerate all the whims of superiors, because they were afraid of losing their jobs. Nowadays, business leaders have to deal with all kinds of people. And, as a rule, it is not just a “gray mass” and proud and ambitious employees. They may not differ from their boss neither by the level of education nor by their intellectual abilities. And in some cases, subordinates may even surpass the boss on these parameters.
Such employees can be threatened, but they are not afraid of losing their job, because they can easily find another one. So what should a manager do whose subordinates are blatantly rude and unwilling to obey orders? Today we will look at several ways to improve subordination in the company.
Make orders specific
One of the most common reasons why subordinates are unwilling to follow their boss’s orders is the lack of specificity in his or her orders. It is often the case that supervisors behave along the lines of “Go there – don’t know where. “. What happens in the end? The result on the output, they also receive the appropriate. Sometimes it also happens that the boss himself confuses a specific order (“write a report”) with an appeal (“you should work more efficiently”). The main function of the first kind of order is instructional, and the second is motivational.
Change the intonation
Often employees are unwilling to obey and show respect simply because they feel that the boss wants to elevate themselves by giving orders. Of course, in most cases this is not the case, and the purpose of the order is actually to carry it out (not to validate the boss). But it is extremely difficult to prove this to subordinates. And that is why a supervisor should give orders in a non-aggressive, calm form. At the same time in your voice should be confident.
Understand the reasons for sabotage.
Sometimes it also happens that understanding orders is not the main thing. It is clear to the employee what the supervisor demands of him. However, even in this case, he does not want to follow orders, just pretending to “not understand”. The reasons for such behavior can be very different. But most often it is a personal antipathy of the subordinate. He does not want to carry out the order, as internally he does not accept its content.
The motivation of the employee may be different, but so is the approach of the chief
An employee can manifest this aversion in different ways: in front of all to challenge the received order, to conduct a hidden struggle, weave intrigues. Managers often make the same mistake in this case. They want to put the subordinate in his place by any means, giving him arguments as to why exactly the order must be executed. But the problem is not in convincing the person of the expediency of following the order. Employees in most cases are unwilling to seek a practical benefit for the organization. He may not see any personal benefit in obeying the order. He has his own goals and objectives: it is important for the subordinate to sit out from call to call and get his money for it.
It is imperative to find out exactly why the subordinate does not want to carry out the order. What is behind his resistance? Could it be a disagreement with the way you do business, or personal interest and career ambition? It doesn’t matter what exactly the subordinate is hiding behind. He can make all the arguments he wants – for example, he can say he cares about the good of the company. Therefore, the manager needs to act not on external manifestations, but on the internal cause that is behind the sabotage.
Most often it happens that conflicts between the boss and a subordinate are of a hidden nature. After all, not every employee will dare openly confront the head. Depending on this you can develop a further strategy: for example, improve the system of motivation, if an employee is not enthusiastic about the orders precisely because of monetary reasons. Or talk openly with a subordinate if he is not satisfied with the management style.
In the first place – open communication.
With the subordinate, who does not want to obey, it is worth conducting an educational conversation. It is important not only to point out the consequences of disobeying orders. It is important to ask what exactly the employee would like to get from you and from working in your company. Maybe the problem lies not only in the amount of financial compensation, but also in the need to reorganize some small things. Perhaps the responsibilities in the department are not properly distributed. For example, one employee is doing the work for two others who are only pretending to be working.
And it is this fact that causes resistance and reluctance to obey orders. After all, you yourself were probably once a simple employee, who knew very well what needed to be improved, what moments require increased attention. Try to figure it out and eliminate the things that cause rejection and irritation. This way you will show yourself a real leader, and the employees will start treating you with more respect.
Don’t be afraid to be tough.
It is possible that with the help of the described methods you will manage to cope with rebellion well. However, in some cases, even such a painstaking approach is not enough. Perhaps the resisting colleague does not obey orders, because he considers himself more worthy of the post of manager? In this case, too, need to conduct an educational conversation. If he will not abandon his pernicious intentions, he will have to leave. Such a decision immediately demonstrates that you – the boss, who cares about high performance and efficiency of his department (or firm). You will be able to prove that you can sometimes make even uncomfortable (and effective for the company) decisions.