It's a tough—but necessary—conversation: Too often, CIOs resign themselves to personnel shortcomings while never directly confronting the under-performing employees. Yes, they realize it's a major problem when a systems administrator constantly shows up late, looking as if he never showered or changed clothes from the previous day. Of course, they know that the stakeholders are getting irritated with a series of blown deadlines. No, you're not unfair in characterizing your applications-performance manager as a brilliant but iconoclastic person who has ticked off pretty much every internal user in the company, including the CEO. These and other behaviors go far beyond "human flaws.” They're damaging your department's performance and reputation—and your credibility will eventually suffer unless you intervene. To get a better sense of how to proceed, consider these tips from Dan McCarthy, director of executive development programs at the University of New Hampshire. Considered one of the top digital influencers in leadership and talent management, McCarthy stresses that correcting a serious employee issue is as important as strategic thinking and agile change management. And, like those other two essentials, it must be approached with a high level of anticipation, planning and execution. You can read more employee, leadership and management tips at McCarthy's SmartBlog on Leadership.
Suggestion Box When transitioning to "action steps," ask for the employee's input on how to correct the situation. If it's a good idea and accepted, he or she will take more ownership in the follow-through.
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