There’s a steep learning curve when you’re building a business and managing employees for the first time that can sometimes lead to performance issues of your own.
Here are six signs that the way you manage might be the biggest roadblock to your team’s performance and productivity.
1. Inconsistent Results
A lot of factors can affect a team’s performance, from individual team members with difficult personal situations to sudden changes in your company or industry. But sometimes getting inconsistent results is actually a product of poor management.
Great managers inspire and motivate their staff to be their best selves every day. When this happens, employees respond well to the feedback, and performance continues to improve.
On the other hand, when performance stops improving and employees disengage, it’s time for managers to assess all of the factors contributing to the workflow. If managers are too hands-off and distance themselves from the front lines, employees may feel disconnected from their responsibilities, and unnoticed.
Managers often overlook the value of one of the most important aspects of the performance management process: monitoring employee performance and developing talent. If this is happening, make sure you’re gathering performance metrics and sharing this data with each employee.
2. Project duplications & delays
Project duplications and delays stem from the same underlying issue: poor organisational communications. Whoever is coordinating the teams and departments isn’t checking to make sure they’re not duplicating each other’s efforts and isn’t making sure all aspects of projects are being completed.
Poor organisational communication can be as damaging to your bottom line as low retention. Redundant work wastes time and resources that could be better put to other uses, and if you miss deadlines or constantly delay projects, your profit figures will invariably suffer.
3. Morale is falling
Employees want to work for managers they trust and respect, which is why relationship-building is vital to the company’s performance-management process. Otherwise, employees may feel left in the dark and disconnected from leadership.
This manager-employee relationship has a direct impact on morale. Some of the biggest issues managers face come from strained relationships.
Fundamentally, employees want open communication and transparency, and recognition for a job well done.
Otherwise, morale will likely drop, and productivity stall. So, embrace transparency in your organisation by hosting a consistent team meeting rhythm, where employees share their accomplishments.
4. High Staff Turnover
Turnover and poor performance aren’t exclusively tied to the quality of a manager, but when one in two employees report they’ve left a job to get away from their boss, it’s a metric worth monitoring. Does it seem like you’re always in a hiring cycle? Are all of your hardest workers leaving?
Take a step back to consider whether it’s related to how you’re managing your team and then put some hiring practices in place to make it easier to determine the cause of your turnover issues.
5. Resistance to Change
All of us resist change due to the fundamental human objection to having the will of others imposed upon us. At the end of the day, all sources of resistance to change need to be acknowledged and people’s emotions validated. It’s far better to anticipate objections than to spend your time putting out fires and knowing how to overcome resistance to change is a vital part of any change management plan.
Mutual mistrust will be the bane of an otherwise well-planned change initiative. If a company is seen as being untrustworthy as demonstrated sometime in the past, why would any employee trust such a business?
Any sweeping changes in people’s jobs can cause employees to fear for their roles in the organization. For this reason, a well-planned support programme should be in place to manage and assist employees. Employees resist change because they are worried that they may not find another job easily and quickly.
6. Blame Culture
As a leader, it’s important to share in the glory when things go right and accept responsibility when things go wrong. Blaming other employees for issues will ruin their morale and lead to rifts in your company culture, resulting in a chain reaction where people are scared to make mistakes and look to pass the blame to the person at the next desk. Employees won’t trust each other, which will make it difficult for them to work together and reduce productivity around your office.
You should always point your employees in the right direction when there are areas needing improvement or mistakes that need correction. But you should avoid publicly blaming a single employee for any issue, no matter how well-deserved you might believe it is.
Remember that your company wins and loses together as a team. Give your employees credit for their successes. When your company has an issue, it’s on you to take responsibility since you’re the leader. In turn, your employees will respect your humble approach and follow your example to strive for improvement.
Being a good manager is all about building the right habits and avoiding the common issues that cause employees to leave. When you do this, you’ll be someone who employees love working for, which means employee retention will be higher and you’ll get better performance from your team.