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Most business owners are afraid to let poor or mediocre Team Members off their bus. They rationalize their lack of action because the Team Member does some good work and sometimes is acceptable. The business owner spends hours stressing and worrying about them and spend even more time trying to get them to work to an acceptable standard.

My experience is that if your heart says that the Team Member is not going to work out, then you're usually right. The day they are replaced is the day your business will starts to grow again.

However, to take the action of removing a poorly-performing Team Member; you need to make sure that you act in a clear and fair way. Two of my favorite words when it comes to dealing with Team Members are “Fair and Equitable”.

I suggest the following process:

* First, you need to ensure the rules of the game and the measurement of the Team Member’s performance goals are clear. Team Members need to know exactly what you are expecting of them. Are goals and the metrics to measure progress part of your job description? They should be!

* Then you need to ensure that they know how to do what you are asking and have the necessary skills to carry out the tasks. The two times you “micromanage” an employee are when they are new, and when they are a performance issue. Open and frequent communication is very important when you are tracking a performance issue.

* Once both parties agree on what is expected, performance measures with specific time expectations should be put in place and achievement of these measures should be reviewed on a regular basis.

* If your Team Member meets the performance measures, then your heart will tell you they are changing for the good and deserve a second chance. If they do not, you have grounds for dismissal on the basis of poor performance. Hire slow, and fire fast.

What normally happens in these circumstances is that it becomes so obvious to your Team Member that they are not good enough, that they will quit before you dismiss them. If you are doing it right …. Poor performance or dismissal should never be a surprise.

Remember that many of your Team Members set their bar for effort and achievement by where you set the minimum standard of acceptable performance.

I suggest an annual exercise of “force ranking” all of your employees, and give a really hard look at the bottom ten percent. If they have been with you for more than a year, why are they in the bottom ten percent? Are they meeting the needs of your business and your customers?

As the owner it is a key responsibility to “enable” your Team Members to be successful. What can you do to make them better at what they do on behalf of your Customers and yourself? Are you taking that responsibility seriously? Are they the right Team member to drive your business forward? There is nothing more important than your Team. Make the tough call and start building a Team of winners. Addressing a poor performer shows a deep resolve for success to all Team members and will inspire performance in the whole Team.

Hire, Inspire, Train and Retain the very best Team, and you will be amazed at how they will drive success.

Just remember not to take any rash action and seek professional HR advice before you act.

If you are in Southern California contact a 5-Star Human Resources professional like Cindy Henry at Integrated Resource Network. Cindy has been my “go to” HR resource for years and has a stellar reputation that she works hard to foster and maintain. Cindy can be reached at .

We “Guarantee” our results!! Contact Jay for a Complimentary Coaching Session (CCS) to show how Coaching is “self-funding” through bottom-line impact in 17-weeks or less. Guaranteed!! , or call my cell at (949) 422-1167.

October will continue to be focused on how to go about Hiring, Inspiring, Training and Retaining GREAT Employees!!

Next week: How to Drive Your Business Forward with New Team Members

Have a Terrific Week!!

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