It’s every manager’s least favorite part of the job: someone on your team isn’t performing up to expectations, and it’s time to do something about it.
But before you decide how to address a performance problem, it’s important to diagnose the root cause.
In my experience, performance is the confluence of ability and motivation. An employee needs to have the ability to perform the task as well as the motivation to do so. Figuring out which is the cause of the performance problem can help you decide how to address it.
The first four causes stem from a lack of ability:
The second set of causes for poor performance are more personal and emotional to the employee and are based in a lack of motivation:
As you can see, one size does not fit all when it comes to handling performance problems. Handing down a punishment for someone who lacks the proper resources or doesn’t have the necessary skills isn’t the right approach; nor is prescribing additional training for someone who really needs praise. Identifying the root cause of the performance problem is key before you can find the right solution.
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Bernard Marr is a bestselling author, keynote speaker, and advisor to companies and governments. He has worked with and advised many of the world's best-known organisations. LinkedIn has recently ranked Bernard as one of the top 10 Business Influencers in the world (in fact, No 5 - just behind Bill Gates and Richard Branson). He writes on the topics of intelligent business performance for various publications including Forbes, HuffPost, and LinkedIn Pulse. His blogs and SlideShare presentation have millions of readers.