staff query...

Looking for some suggestions here… I got two staff in my team who takes very little initiative. They basically wait for work to be allocated to them, and as soon as they get some, they complete it as quick as they can and then ask for more. This is taking up a significant amount of managements time… What should you guys have done if they are not actively networking with other units, coming up with their own ideas, projects, identifying opportunities to add value etc… It is very frustrating as they are both mature staff, but they come across as very junior when they act like that… Would appreciate your advice!!

Fire warning…usually make people move faster :slight_smile:

no… i dont want them to work faster… i want them to come up with own stuff to do and add VALUEEEE, not just being busy fools… its so frustrating…

Well, I think you should try to do things in order to motivate them and put a bit of competition between them (a bit its always good). Anyway…you should also show a lot of interest and motivation in what you do! Have you ever tried to talk about this with them? It always helps If they really do passive job…then you should put higher target.

What were your and their expectations when they were hired? Maybe they don’t want to take such initiatives, so from their perspective, they’re being underutilized and mismanaged. Also have to take into consideration the current stage of their career vs the current stage of their life. Maybe family is becoming more important or the industry is wearing them out.

Wait until you get rid of them and you have to do all the crap work and then tell me they don’t add value.

Maybe it has to do with the type of work you (or others) are giving them. If you give them a very specific task, they will complete that specific task. Instead of delegating “start the trolling motor, put a worm on the hook, use this net, and put this fish in the left holding tank” you should try asking them to simply “catch fish”.

Have you sat down and talked with them and told them what you expect? They may already have other projects that are taking up their time. I had that in one of my jobs. My boss asked me to do the same thing but the problem was that I was already assigned work that took up 100% of my time, not including the extra hours I would spend in the office to get it done. I did a log of my typical week and wrote down what I did each day and how long it took me for about two weeks. My boss ended up reassigning or eliminating the tasks he didn’t deem as valuable and I was able to do more interesting projects. I have to tell you it made me like my job a whole lot more. Hope that helps, Good luck!

You need to have a sense of what areas are areas where their known skills can add value (I’m not saying that you don’t have this sense, but if you don’t, you need to start with it). Then you assign them to do some kind of evaluation of current practice or company processes in this area and have them up with some strategic directions of where they think this should go for the company or you. Have them do a gap analysis, come up with a solution, budget, milestones, and timeline. Then you ask them to execute the steps. They’ve produced the plan, you’ve approved it, so they should be excited to get up and going. This means your job is to approve or modify their suggestions, bring together the resources they would need to complete it, and then make sure that they keep on task and don’t get distracted. So the first task is to get them to identify a key company need and how they can solve it. Since you know what they are good at, you can point them to a fertile area. If you don’t know what area that might be, you might schedule a long lunch and early afternoon session to brainstorm issues with them.

Maybe you’re micromanaging them? Something in what you do, or what others do in the office, might give them the impression that this is really what you want? Maybe you’ve become know to turning down ideas in the past? Maybe you’ve called them busy fools enough times to make them believe it’s not worth the effort, that you hate them anyway? Why don’t you print out the following, and ask them to discuss it (together) and present you with their conclusion and suggestion on what advice to give you with respect to their work and the projects and ideas they identify?

wicked link, thanks. dare I present this art of genius to my senior manager… or not.

OK, thanks all that responded. there is some really good ideas in here, thanks a bunch.