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Employee Performance in Limbo?

A stick figure tries to limbo dance

How LOW should you let your employees’ performance go?

Many of you may have caught wind of the recent “leaked memo” from Meta detailing their direct and well, blunt plan for managing negative attitudes and low performers. And because I love a good leaked memo, I thought I’d share a few thoughts.

First, it’s an absolute fact that companies should not have unlimited loyalty and patience for low performing employees. And, secondly, if an employee is not meeting expectations, it should not be ignored or tolerated. Action should be taken. The challenge is, what action? 

This is where many companies fall down. They rely on the formal HR processes and teams that are primarily in place to protect the company from liability (think “wrongful termination”) to also do the difficult and nuanced work of provoking insight, inspiring more effective habits, and sustaining improvements for low performers. I’m curious what the senior Meta executives were expecting when, according to the leaked memo, they directed the company’s team leaders to report all low performers to an internal HR system. Did they believe that system would kick in like a self-cleaning oven and effectively burn away the performance issues?  

Managing low performers is about leadership, not a performance management system

Performance improvement is not the job of your HR department. It’s the job of your leaders. Every single leader in your company. If you have an issue, like Meta, of too many low performing employees, you have a leadership problem. The only way out of it is through better leadership at every level.

At Slingshot25, we spend a lot of time talking about this topic. Here are a few tips for leaders with performance issues on their team – including negative attitudes! 

  • Set clear expectations
  • Use a nuanced accountability process that doesn’t wait for issues to get serious before taking action 
  • Learn how to coach (this is very different from giving direction or advice)
  • Always show kindness and respect 

Don’t leave your employees’ performance in limbo. Contact us to learn more about our approach to leadership.

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