With all the challenges the health care industry faces these days, why do leaders and managers tolerate poor performers in the workplace? We have observed several incidences of hospital managers putting up with disruptive behavior, low productivity or lack of professionalism—sometimes at the cost of top performers who leave because they have had enough of the negative work environment. And sometimes, these managers have lost their jobs because they would not take the steps necessary to correct the employee issues.
We interviewed some leaders in health care to find out why it is so difficult to deal with poor performers. Here is just a few of the most common problems:
- Believing that the manager can change the person’s behavior.
- The fear of loss of a specific skill.
- Discounting the bad behavior, and not analyzing the broader implications such as retention of top performers.
- A lack of control over the hiring process to replace the problem employee. Many managers find their internal HR processes take too long to fill positions.
- Managers not properly trained to deal with confrontation of poor performance.
There is a broad belief that people can be fixed. Resources and dollars are spent on trying to change behaviors of people who were never a good fit for the job in the first place. The reality is health care managers need to recognize that there are specific predictors, critical success factors, behaviors and evidence-based business practices that contribute to high performance. Focusing on a better hiring process can go a long way to increasing productivity and saving money in health care, and alleviate many of the problems managers face with employees.
Select the right person
Now that we know WHAT the issues are when it comes to managers and poor performers, much of this can be corrected by looking at the behaviors needed to fit the job and decide WHO is best to do the job. Most traditional hiring processes stop with hard skills (for example, working knowledge of various medicines and their interactions, ability to read and analyze cardiac data)
and experience needed, but you must also take the time to determine what PERSONAL SKILLS (sometimes referred to as soft skills) an employee needs to be able to do the job. Some examples of the dozens of possible personal skills are:
- Ability to manage stress
- Ability to be accountable for others
- Leading others
- Planning and organization
- Ability to pay attention to detail
- Problem solving ability
Most people do not fail in their jobs because they lack hard skills; they fail because they don’t have the personal skills necessary to do that specific job in that specific environment. To learn a better hiring process go to http://vantagegroupinc.com/hiring-retention-strategies/