Here’s a sneak peek into my upcoming book: How To Hire the Best: The Entrepreneur’s Ultimate Guide to Attracting Top Performing Team Members (Releasing September 15, 2020)
Why does disengagement happen?
Most experts blame immediate supervisors for employee disengagement. Certainly, a bad boss who yells and belittles team members will lead team members to become ticked off, apathetic, and disengaged. However, in my experience, most of the owners with whom we work are not bad bosses. In fact, they care considerably for their team members and yet they still have problems with disengaged team members. Here are the six primary reasons for employee disengagement.
1. Team Members Not Understanding Their Role in the Story of Serving Your Ideal Client
FACT: Most business owners don’t have a compelling story about the “why” of their business and how their business serves a need of their ideal client and customer, much less a story that is appealing to their ideal team member.
When team members buy into why your business exists, why you are passionate about the customers and clients you serve, and why what the employee does matters, they are much more likely to be engaged. Taking out the trash is no longer just a chore to be done. It becomes a part of the whole story about why what you do matters.
2. Letting Too Many Slackers Hang on for Too Long
Letting too many slackers hang on for too long drags down morale. Your best people get tired of cleaning up messes made by the slackers. Plus, word gets out. Exceptional team members do not want to work with a bunch of warm bodies. By keeping warm bodies around, you are actually repelling exceptional team members.
3. The Boss Exhibiting Bad Behaviors
(Notice, I did not say “bad bosses.”)
Managing team members who constantly make mistakes and who do just enough to get by is maddening for even the most patient of bosses. We all have our breaking points.
Mike Bruno struggled to be patient with team members, especially when they made mistakes. He was repeatedly frustrated by the drama that arose when he criticized someone for not executing on the work he needed finished. Drama simply does not coincide with his personality type.
4. Failing to Delegate
As much as we business owners want to delegate, we can fail miserably in our execution of this. Failing to delegate will drag down morale. This often occurs because we do not trust the team members we’ve hired to get the job done.
5. A Mismatch Between the Team Member’s Immutable Laws and Yours
Many new hires are excited to work for you. They start out engaged, even though they are relatively ineffective because they are still learning the ropes. Once they are trained and have been with you for a while, they are exactly the kind of employee you want—engaged and effective.
6. Failing to Intervene Quickly When a Good Employee Shows the First Sign of Disengagement
You have a good employee who typically performs well and makes you proud. One day you observe this employee doing something out of character. Intervene as quickly as possible.
Too often, owners are inclined to overlook the problem, hoping it will go away. It won’t. Chances are, you’re seeing the first sign of a more serious problem to develop. Address it quickly and hold the employee accountable for improvement.
For tips on how to work through these problems and coach your team more effectively, please be sure to check out How To Hire the Best: The Entrepreneur’s Ultimate Guide to Attracting Top Performing Team Members, releasing September 15, 2020.