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An employee has the knowledge and experience, knows the processes and systems very well. However the employee is not performing, making mistakes which are avoidable. When feedback is given on the performance, the employee accepts the mistakes, is aware of the impact on the project the mistakes cause but does not work to improve the mistakes and performance.

We tried everything, counselling, to talking to the employee to find out if there are personal and/or other factors that are resulting in non performance at work. The employee is very cheerful and gets along very well with the team. Very chatty and talks a mile a minute at every given opportunity. also tends to waste time which should have been used effectively to meet project deadlines. Socially very active, but when it comes to work, the employee does not seem to take project deadlines, accuracy of tasks and releases very seriously.

The project Lead is extremely frustrated and wants to chuck the resource out of his team. That would be the last step. I am refraining from taking such an action cuz, the employee is very committed, has knowledge, experience but what the employee lacks in is focusing.

Friends, I would welcome your suggestions to handle this particular employee.

Thank you

From India, Pune
Ms. Richa,
First of all, thanks for sharing such a situation in this forum.
Quite possible that I may be wrong, but, what I have experienced many of the times, is that if a person say is the character of your mentioned employee, people don't take him seriously. I still remember when Cricketer Ajay Jadeja used to play, he used to enjoy the game, but, people watching him on the television would say that he doesn't play seriously & he's just doing time pass. Any other good player could have been accomodated. Even when he gets a 40 odd runs during the slog overs, people say that he just threw his bat & it went to the boundaries etc.
Due to this type of attitude of the people, the person many of the times doesn't want to perform, eventhough, he has the capabilities, because he would never be appreciated/rewarded for it.
From India, Pune
To my understanding, this employee is well versed with competence (Knowledge +Skill) but he is lacking in competency (behaviour). Attitude towards the job is more important than experience and knowledge to perfor where in this case he has been provided with chances to change which has never happened.

The ultimate of any job is perfection rather completion. Both skill and knowledge can be trained to the level of expectation but the behaviour of any individual is a birth sign which is hard to change (Nothing is impossible).

Lets answer some q?

1. Why the company recruited the employee for that specific position?

2. Performance & Attitude towards comp. future?

3. Why the company need him?

Still if the Orgn is interested on the individual then this can be taken under special and some ground work has to be taken place.

1. His personal life and behaviuor

2. An enquiry with his peer, collegue on his work attitude

3. Where he is lacking and why?

4. Whether all is expectations towards company has been fulfilled?

5. Relationship between his immidiate boss and peer?

6. Whether his behavoiur suits with his boss?

when we come to meet the answers for some of the above surely lot more ques will be raised as a chain to the existing.

I am not an expert in this profession but i just tried this case as a employee rather HR!!!


From India, Madras
I think company should try and make analysis of his behaviour , is the person always like that or is it that it just recently doing so or neglecting work, when he is accepting his mistake but what the reson behind it not to improve the same.
what is he expecting from company or his collegueas or his immediate boss or higher authority. may be a personal issue which he is not sharing.
he has behaviouoral problem , i think he should be given a try but also warned or may be suspended for some days which will make him be more careful towards job.
From India, Mumbai
Hi ,
In this case the agents needs proper motivation According to my experience agents can be motivated in 3 ways .
First- Money money money.
second -stick
We can call it carrot and stick policy.
however what works more is emotional motivation by his immediate superior.
if all the three doesn't work the last resort is you need to hurt the ego of the person and the extent has to be decided by the discreation of his superior who knows him well.
If he dosen't improve then as well its time to show him the door
From India, Delhi
I can say is there is no appreciation for the work form his immediate manager which results in lack of interest due to no appreciation for any work done by him.

I assume for the characteristics stated by you about the employee, that he is very active person,basically this kind of people are intelligent and experts in their work, but they are always associated with one common negative point which is lack of concentration,this kind of people are aware of the mistake,but are unable to rectify the same,because they understand the mistake but cant recognize the same when they repeat it again.
The best way to rectify the employee and help him perform his best would be, by helping him not only to understand his mistakes,but also recognize them when he repeats the mistakes and also a way as to how to over come the same
Thank you
From India, Mumbai
The employee in 'question' needs to be analysed on certain issues..

1. How long has he been working for in the organization?

2. Is his behaviour a recent change? If so, is it the latest performance appraisal, change in management, promotion of peers..etc causing it?

3. How are his relations with his immediate supervisors/team leaders?

4. is there an open communication system in the organization?

Given that all seems fair and the organization is not to be blamed for it....then there are other aspects to consider...

a. The employee maybe demotivated with the reward based system of the company on reaching project deadlines.

b. Job security maybe an issue. The employee is 'too secure' with his job and has taken it for granted that knowledge is enough to keep ones job secure.

The Organization may consider implementing the the foolowing:

1. Reconsider and if necessary, revise the Reward based system. this may not only motivate the employee in question but may also awaken other potential employees.

2. Introduce and conduct Stay Interviews where motivation, career goals and improvement areas of the employees are recorded as stated by the employees themselves.

3. If nothing else works, let the employee be warned that he may lose his precious job if the next deadline is not met. A higher ranking official in the organization would be more effective in communicating this message than his immediate supervisor. Set a may work..

Thanks and regards,

From India, Delhi
In this case, you should arrange one-to-one connection with the employee as to ask him the root cause which failed him to commit to the deadline.
For the company, the behavior at work is the first priority leading to the good performance. He should be known for that. Then, you assign him a task with clear cut performance criteria is enough to evaluate his behaviour. This is also a last chance for him to work for the company. If you are reluctant in dealing with him definitively, you will risk the spirit of team work and project progression.
Hoping that it will help you in certain extent.
From Vietnam, Hai Phong

well well,,

here it goes from your paragraph it is assumed that the employee has excellent knowledge of processes and systems and was performing well and recently his performance has come down and is making mistakes.

This was accepted by the employee too. Now you are thinking as to what has happened with the employee as to reduce his performance and he is now making mistakes.

Your counselling will not work , bcoz if employee is having some personal problem which is hampering his work, he will not tell u real reason, because you are just HR , you are neither his mother, wife, sister, nor any relative, so better keep your counselling as short as possible and not to further aggravate the situation. Better leave the employee alone for some time and observe, give the employee some time, if the problem gets solved by itself its good, dont get to the root cause now itself, it will put bad image of u.

Other thing is he might be deliberately doing this so as to get releived soon,

or he really might be in some serious personal trouble which he cannot share with u who is an outsider, and can neither help in his personal matter.

u have to conduct many trial and errors to determine root cause which will give u an idea of how to proceed.

because only u can personally interact with employee rest we others can only advise, so dont act directly on any advice given by members, it might spoil an employees career,, so take decision carefully.
From India, Pune
Dear Ms Richa
From your account I find that you have done all which was needed as a supportive action from HR to help an employee improve but invain. Despite of your earnest counselling the employee continues to be a non performer, makes avoidable mistakes ( careless disposition ) and tends to waste time. He is definitely not committed.
Had I been in such a predicament , I would have given the employee a final time bound warning to improve or face termination. Perhaps this may help him realise the gravity of the situation and awken him from his slumber.
An occasioanl dip in performance is natural and acceptable but then one is expected to take the performance feedback seriously and improve. Afterall a good or accepatble on the job performance is the basic contract which an employee has with his company otherwise he loses his right to remain in employment.
From India

I'll sugest u one thing that what ever things u have told abt the employee it does not mean that he is not serious with his/her work but may be i m wrong coz i had seen a case where in a employee was not working properly in the office & she use to do time pass all the time & then other people use to suffer coz of her. HR made her understand once & even other use to complain abt her but she was realy not interested in her work & left the job. see the thing is it is not difficult to judge a person whether he/she is realy seroius with the work or not, First make her/him understand that coz of her/his behaviour bad kind of image is getting create in front of every one (even the boss) & tell her/him what will be the side effect if she/he will behave like this & it is going to affect on her/his appraisal & increment , she/he will start thinking abt all this thing if she/he realy dont wont salary & appriasal should get affected she/he wont behave that way but if not then the behaviour will be same & then it is upto the HR team what to do with it to give coach n council or verbal notice.
From India, Mumbai
To my understanding, this employee is well versed with competence (Knowledge +Skill) but he is lacking in competency (behaviour). Attitude towards the job is more important than experience and knowledge to perfor where in this case he has been provided with chances to change which has never happened.

The ultimate of any job is perfection rather completion. Both skill and knowledge can be trained to the level of expectation but the behaviour of any individual is a birth sign which is hard to change (Nothing is impossible).

Lets answer some q?

1. Why the company recruited the employee for that specific position?
2. Performance & Attitude towards comp. future?
3. Why the company need him?

Still if the Orgn is interested on the individual then this can be taken under special and some ground work has to be taken place.

1. His personal life and behaviuor
2. An enquiry with his peer, collegue on his work attitude
3. Where he is lacking and why?
4. Whether all is expectations towards company has been fulfilled?
5. Relationship between his immidiate boss and peer?
6. Whether his behavoiur suits with his boss?

when we come to meet the answers for some of the above surely lot more ques will be raised as a chain to the existing.

I am not an expert in this profession but i just tried this case as a employee rather HR!!!

akhil saxena
From India, Gurgaon
Have a good day.
I hope your case is a normal which exist in many organization. Though he may be a professional in his field of kowledge, but the reality could be just controversy. There could be many reasons behind this like
1. Compensation (just have a look at his present package with similar person in similar kind of industry)
2. Relationship with immediate superviser (analyse the relationship b/w him and his immediate boss)
3. To know about his future career (objective) in his life. And to asses whether the guy having interest in doing his job.
4. If he has interest on his job, then go for some sort of training and development activities.
5. Finally have a look at his personal life, family and all.
From India, Madras
Dear friend,
Based on the facts given by you, my view is hereunder:
1.Enquire him in depth, whether he is having any personal problems which drags him behind while working
2.since you have mentioned that he is talking well, he may be a talkative, place him in an isolated place for his work and see whether he can do well.
From India, Madras
I agree with the excellent response from Nina. I would add that you could use a rigorous employee performance diagnostic tool like the one at to determine where the problem lies.

The workplace performance factors I summarize at also outline areas to probe in the employee’s immediate workplace environment.

When the root cause of the problem appears to be a poor match between the employee and the job, then you will need to start the escalation process to remove the person from the job. Not doing this will only serve as a bad example to the rest of the team and you will see a diminishing of morale over time.

Les Allan

Author: From Training to Enhanced Workplace Performance
From Australia, Glen Waverley
I have gone through your problem about that person - who is not performing to the set standards, despite giving feedback and also acknowledging. From my personal experiences, the best way to handle the situation is... by a package developed by me... Building Relationship with NLP - I have trained many people to understand their actions / behaviours [lens with which they see & react] based on the study of their reactions to various situations. Please respond to , to carry forward on this.
Vijay Bhasker
From India, Bangalore
check the following aswell:
How interesting is the job to the employee
Study his behaviour in and out of work
review his salary and establish the differences as compared to his colleagues
How is the supervisors treating him
Analyse the employee, his job and his surrounding.
Hope it helps.

Good one to discuss, the very first thing you need to see in him is his atittude towards the work and behavior with the peers, boss etc
one would be perfect in his technical skills but it is rather most important to have the behavior and Atittude as well, to my knowledge i have not short-listed the guys who are strong in technical but they have atittude and their behavior is not upto the mark, its just because when you are giving your 100% there you find the comitment and atittude involved in it
i think that he would be thinking that he is smart enough and genius in what he is specialized (one point)
he has not been recognized for what he has given to the organization (second point)
try and see to find out what must be the reason from him or his collegues, peers - mingle with him talk to him personally and see how is he talking and am sure if he has somethign to talk to you for sure he would come out
welcoming others views
- Mirza
From Saudi Arabia, Jiddah
Hi Richa,
We faced the same situation in our organisation. Came up with Weekly time sheets contaning the dialy input by the employees and confirmation from their managers wrt the effort put in. When these types of employees have to be disciplined we need to show thema mirror of what they are doing. when they pen down on daily basis their contribution, they think back. it has worked out for us. You can also probably try.
From India, Mumbai
Dear Friend,

What i came to know after going through the given incident of your organisation, that generally the experienced and intellectual employees are tend to behave like this. to counter this problem, the counselling is the best way. first you have to observe how this particular fellow is doing on the job. wether the management has made him aware about the policies and procedures of the company? wether you are having any scheme to recognise the sincere and hard working employee? if so, any employee is ignored in giving special increment or promotion? wether the company has given such increments or promotion to any undeserved employees? wether the employee under the reference has been ignored and his juniors were promoted?

if the company policies and procedures are good, generally, this type problems may not arise. for every problem there is solution. in such a cas eonly thing we can do is to select the right one in tackling the situation like present one.

if you say that there is no fault of the management policy, then the problem lies with his immediate boss. he might have some personal bias and showing descrimation attude among his subordinates, which may hurt the sentiments of the emplyee under the reference.

even if his boss is good and there is no fault of with him in this case, then you have give counselling to the concerned employee and should know wether he has got any problems either at work place or at his residence. in some of the cases, the domestic problems of the employee also influence his performance on the job

Being a HR professional we should have the capacity to anlyse the problems of the individual at his work place and at his residence.

with out having any of the above, problems, if the employee concerned is deleberately doing this, with view to cause financial or some problems, then we need not to tolerate this type of employees and the disciplinary proceedings are to be initated against him to set him right- if he doesnot change his behaviour then we have to take steps to remove him from the services by following due procedure of issuing advise letter, chargesheet, holding enquiry, final show cause notice, and dismissal order etc.

i think for the given problem, my suggetion may not 100% right, because one cannot say with out knowing the fact as to what is going on at his work place exactly and what are the internal and external factors influencing the working conditions of workmen. wether political games are being played by his superiors to meet their personal reasons etc


From India, Hyderabad
1. give that fellow LEAD ROLE in said project. ( at least show that )
2. mange to take PUBLIC committment from him about goals & how he will reach it. ( its from aspiration theory - ind. psycho)
3. display in public daily/weekly progress of project.
4. try management by objective for him.
5. think of awards & recognition.
From India, Pune
Well Richa

firstly i see a lot of valuable comments and suggestions are on here and many of them are very useful.

But i would like to approach it in terms of an employer engagement issue rather an employee issue.Let me clarify the above statement

Let us take the established points

A) employee is uptodate in terms of systems procedures

B) employee is receptively (at least outwardly to discussions)

c)the employee is committed

d) socially active

Well now that these are established let us look ask a few key questions

a) the employee is committed to what? his work(personal goals) or company culture?

Herein could lie one if the answers.What are his/her personal goals in life?Are they really in alignment with company goals?If not then how can they be aligned?

B) Does the employee understand his/her performance goals(not of the team on the whole) and the consequences of not achieving these goals.

c)Thirdly "comfort zones" -has the employee created a comfort zone both socially and work wise which is giving him/her a false sense of security.Comfort zones are created based on past performance or also false sense of security in teams which arises from social activeness as you have mentioned. It takes on an atmosphere akin to the army where individuality is not the key but rather team work is overly emphasized.

d) hence the last question.As a company/work division do you emphasize inviduality in team performances.when i say that are individuals recognized and are there means for redressal and or recognition of high performing individuals to be recognized other than the references of their immediate supervisor or line manager

e) Elaborating on the point above the proverbial question of 'boredom'.Is the individual a high performer who currently feels that he is better than the team lead? Is he really better? And if he is then would it be viable to redeploy asset keeping in mind the current project commitments?

Hope that is helpful for i also have faced such situations which sometimes seem totally mysterious

Ps: would suggest semi-formal meetings with members in the individual's social circle to see if he/she has mentioned notions of being better than current team lead

From India, Mumbai
The proof of the pudding is in eating it. The employee may have all the virtues, but is failing to perform. In such important positions, you just cant depend on 'trial and error' method. You have to act fast and see that things are not allowed to drift.
Have a plain talk with the individual and point out all the short comings. Get a feed back from him and examine if any corrective action is to be taken from the Management side. Once the goals are set, let the employee know your expectations, and also the imlications should he fail to perform. Depending upon the outcome, take action.
Remember, other employees are also watching you. Dont allow lethargy to creep in. As managers, our job is to make the employees competitive, and not comfortable.
From India, Nagpur
Dear Richa,

Thanks for bringing up this situation in forum, perhaps there are few reason why he is making mistakes while brimmed with all the job skills and experience, might be he starts taking that job as a granted as he possess every thing (skills + experience) and he might give less importance to the job and the tasks given to him, perhaps he is looking for some challenge-able position or he needs some change or needs some rest, sometime it becomes more critical situation when being involved among co-workers and having an unnecessary chit chat, or he might be demotivated due to the result of appraisal and he expected himself some good rewards what he was deserving.

I think here we can apply the same terminology GO SLOW , he might be deprived from any deserving reward or recognition thats why he is not meeting the deadlines. Now this is what you have to look by simply invite him in the dinner where you can make very casual and informal discussion about the problem he is facing or use some other tactics.

I support the suggestions given by Nina and other staff, please take him in confidence and take the issue out from the bag.

Cheers !!

From Paraguay
Your evaluation must be focused in the following areas:-

1) What were the inputs given to the person and against what defects;
2) Was proper counseling provided for the given defect;
3) Who evaulated the defect and counseling process;
4) Was HR given the power to make modifications to behaviour or was it a ad hoc attempt - in other words, would HR intervention have mattered to the company;
5) Were all inputs from all authorities in the same direction - or were they confusing - an organization with cross-purposes within can send out very different messages;
6) What was the actual intention of the defect rectification process - 90% of what is conveyed is based on our intention - words don't just mean what they mean anymore!!
7) Who is tracking the counseling process and change in behaviour and under what parameters;
8) What are the business requirements - have you communicated those to the person concerned - as a change of behaviour can mean improved business. If he buys this theory - does he believe it?
9) The perception and attitude of a person is also governed by the environment he/she is in - who can change his perception?

From India, Bangalore
Hey I doubt if you would be going through all the replies yet heres my opinion...
This guy seems to be a careless employee. More than often we find such talents being wasted.
"lato ke bhoot bato se nahi mante" I dont expect you to kick him though.... ;)
Along with your tech lead you need to assign timelines and benchmarks. Allow him 3 chances to improve. If he does not you'd better chuck him.
He seems to be someone with exceptional PR skills, hence he has built a good rapport.
From India, Mumbai
Dear Richa,
I feel the best way to tackle this situation is that you issue him a warning letter based on the mistakes that he has done on job. If you do so, he will get the hint that he should better change his attitude and it will set as an example to other employees within the organisation.
From India, Mumbai
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