Humans are products of our experiences. In many cases, even when incredibly hard to admit, we function based upon how we have been treated in the past. Improper treatment may have occurred in personal or in business/employment relationships. As a result an employee, especially a new one may have developed a sense of paranoia and distrust which clouds their productivity and judgment in the management of relationships. Can these issues be managed? Yes, in my opinion with these three, (3) ingredients.
1. Be Willing to Listen
Sometimes a simple question such as, “Do you want to tell me about what may be behind your behavior so I can try and help?”, could open the door to improvement. Often allowing someone to vent and then articulating how differently you operate when compared to others they have dealt with might turn the relationship around and be a good thing for the employer.
2. Have the Discernment to Advise without Crossing Lines
A little advice might be in order especially if you, as the supervisor have more experience in life and/or the workplace. Be careful crossing that line of liability by saying the wrong things or elevating one lifestyle over another. Be quick on listening, short on offering certain types of opinions. There are just some lines an employer should not cross, even in day-to-day dialogue.
3. Draw a Line Between Damaged and Surrendered
A bit of discernment is also needed. This employee who flies off the handle at the least little thing, calls and ask questions before he/she investigates to find the legitimate answer on their own first, etc. could surely be damaged. They could be motivated to broaden their thinking and be more productive or they may have settled into a comfort zone associated with being a victim. The grand plan could be luring you into their world of sympathy with the hope you will not question how many breaks they take, bathroom trips and more that does nothing but make them less productive. So use some discernment, establish boundaries and don’t get played.
Of course it is not the role of am employer to replace a parent or devote important company time to the equivalent of professional counseling. After all the one who appears damaged may just be lazy, indifferent or refuses to commit to responsibility. So before you decide to try and manage the damaged, be sure the foregoing is given some consideration.
Most of the blog content on this site relates to the delivery of care. However, issues affecting management of employee behavior crosses all lines of behavior.
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