The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service says performance counselling is a collaborative process of 'joint problem-solving'.
This means the solution to your problem (i.e. the employee's under-performance) lies in you helping your employee to solve the underlying problem that contributes to or causes the under-performance (whether this is personal in nature or work-related).
How do you do this?
Follow this five-step joint problem-solving approach when addressing poor performance
The key ingredients of a problem-solving approach are:
Step #1: Determine and explain or confirm the problem with your employee.
You can do this by:
Step #2: Identify the underlying causes of the problem through discussions with your employee. Make sure you listen to your employee.
Step #3: Brainstorm together with your employee to determine as many solutions to the problem as possible without discussing or criticising them.
Step #4: Afterwards, start evaluating the proposed solutions on the basis of their feasibility, practicality and affordability.
If you can't implement some of your employee's proposals, explain why. Don't simply ignore his proposals.
Step #5: Put in place a detailed plan of action. This plan is your tool to manage the problem. Here's what to include in your plan:
Important: Never cancel the review meeting if your employee's performance has improved. Use the opportunity to encourage your employee. Specify a final review date. But, if performance still hasn't improved by that date, hold a hearing.
Well there you have it. The only way you'll improve your employee's performance is if you give him active assistance to help him improve. And these five steps will help you do just that.
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