Red Green Repeat Adventures of a Spec Driven Junkie

Managing with Heart: 'Where do you really want to be for work?'

As a manager, one of the hardest part of the job is figuring out what to do when a team member is not working out.

This is when you sit down with them and talk to them, human to human.

It could be just there’s personal issues going on. Another is they just need some help you overlooked.

Either way, establish direct communication and find out.

If things are still not working out, well, company procedure would say:

Bring out the PIP

That’s probably the worst thing to do, unless you want the next 30/60/90 days of your work day to have weekly meeting with human resources and at the end, there’s a good chance there’s a forcing action by you.

Go with a heart-to-heart talk - where you ask the team member one question:

Where do you really want to be for work?

Give them some time and space to think and feel through their answer, because their answer will determine your next step.

If they want to stay - you would give them a “reverse PIP” - one where the team member decides their own outcomes and time-lines. Weekly check-ins, measured results - guided by you. You empower them in their role. As a PIP - this is night and day better than the corporate one.

If they want to move on - you ask by when do they want to leave and start preparing to send them off with pride. They made a massive decision to change their life for the better by knowing the current role isn’t working and moving on.

In both situations - you are empowering the team member to take charge of their life. The most important thing you’re doing recognizing they’re having a hard time and is giving them the space to decide on their own.

Having them decide on their own is more powerful than anything you can motivate with.

And the results will work out for everyone.