This is a short report about assessing an underachieving employee that I personally had to deal with. It discusses the problems that arose. I analysed them and then put into place a couple of solutions.
The most problematic work situation that I personally encountered was with a work colleague who was a young lady working at the Cooperative food group and she was underachieving. This relates to the concepts of book2, An introduction to human resource management in business, session 4 Assessing and developing people at work. When my work colleague first started working
at the Cooperative she was an excellent worker who gave 100% all the time. She had worked at the Cooperative for just over two years and we were in the process of thinking about promoting her from a customer service assistant to a supervisor. She started to make mistakes at the checkout, our manager noticed cash shortages, missing transaction paperwork and mistakes on the lottery and paypoint terminals. As a supervisor my manager asked me to monitor the situation over a two week period and to write down any mistakes or cash shortages and put the dates they happened so that our manager could decide what the next course of action would be.
Assessing a Underachieving Employee
The analysis of the problems that arose.
I am using concepts from book 2, An introduction to human resource management in business, session 4, assessing and developing people at work. These mistakes that my work colleague were making could be happening for a number of reasons. She could be having financial difficulties so she has stolen the money that is why there are cash shortages, however that does not explain why the other mistakes have occurred on the lottery and paypoint terminals and it’s very easy to jump to the wrong conclusion when analysing this. I believe the main point to be about performance management as it states in book 2, session 4.1, performance management “ensuring that staff are motivated”. I don’t think she is motivated anymore, as when she is at work she is stuck on a checkout for very long periods of time.
There is no variety in her job role to keep her motivated, and to be perfectly honest when other members of staff are busy she does get forgotten about and if she does not ask the other members of staff she would not even get her breaks as they forget about her. Doing the same thing day in day and day out can become a bit monotonous. This is why her performance has started to suffer as she feels deflated and demotivated. It is as though she has given up on this job and just turns up because she has to and she needs the money. As it states in book 2, session 4.2 Assessing performance “the person may lack direction or be working to less than full capacity”. Which in this case I believe to be true. This will affect how the business is run if not dealt with as other members of staff could start to do the same. Customers will not want to shop there if the staff don’t show an interest. The standards that were once there will start to drop resulting in a negative impact on the business.
A solution to the problems that occurred
The first thing I would do would be to set up a record of meetings with this work colleague and our manager. This is a discussion about what is happening and it is recorded for future reference. At this meeting I would discuss how we can move forward together as a team. I would explain to her the importance of her job role and how important it is to get it right. I would set her small achievable targets to aim for with rewards given when achieved. Arranging regular meetings is also a good idea; this could be done as a performance appraisal. As it states in book 2, session 4.4, table 4.2, it has the “Opportunity to motivate staff by recognising achievements”. I believe this is what is needed in this situation, she needs to feel like a valued team member, this would then give her the motivation needed to do her job correctly and to her full capacity, the business will then be more productive as it stated in book 2, session 4.2 Assessing performance.
I may then look into whether she would be interested in changing her job role a little, for example, stock replenishment, and fetching deliveries in, checking dates on products, that sort of thing. This would give her some variety in her job and hopefully motivate her again. This would require more training and cost the business, however if she is just on the checkouts and not been monitored she is costing the business money anyway through the mistakes she is making. Some of this training would be done externally, through training courses, however most of the training would be done by coaching. As it states in book 2, session 4.6, Developing is not just training courses, “coaching; a way of transferring knowledge and skill from a more experienced person to a less experienced person”. I think this is the best way forward for this work colleague in this situation.
Research from the Internet
I looked on the internet and did some research to see how to develop underachievers at work. I found two the first one was Yourbusiness.azcentral.com. It basically states that underachievers inhibit teamwork and lower morale of other staff members. It also says you need to form relationships with employees, so you can create a willingness to help the individual. It also says to set incremental goals for the employee. What this website was saying made sense, however I’m not sure how reliable this source is as it wants me to subscribe to them. The next one I looked at was www.acas.org.uk. I found this website very interesting as it gives a full list of different forms that you can print including appraisal forms, absence record sheets and lots of information about how to manage performance. I believe this to be a reliable source as this organisation is devoted to preventing and resolving employment issues, also it wasn’t trying to sell me anything.
Tutor group forum
I particularly enjoyed the tutor group forum activity 2.1 – Work Pleasure or Pain? It was nice that most people thought the same as me, in that they enjoyed their work. My husband hates work and never understands how I can enjoy going to work. I totally agreed with what Mark Pickering said in that work is a pleasure and that it allows me to achieve my goals in life, while providing for my family.
Book 2 (2012) ‘An introduction to human resource management in business’ The Open University, Milton Keynes. Study Companion (2012), The Open University, Milton Keynes.