I try to keep things on a positive note, but some messages are better delivered when you show the “worst case” scenario. I hope none of you ever experience these types of situations in the workplace, but believe me, they do exist.
Here goes-don’t do anything I talk about on this list if you want to have engaged, productive employees:
- Don’t talk directly with your employees if you have questions about their performance. Use their co-workers as “snitches” in order to learn what is really going on.
- Make assumptions about people based on where they went to school, what they drive or what they like to do. You might even make assumptions based on their race or national origin.
- If you have new employees, especially recent graduates, “throw them into the fire” with little or no training.
- When your employees make mistakes, grill them to point out all of their faults. They will respect and fear you then. (This is the corollary to #3).
- Change your direction often and don’t give your employees any advanced notice when this change is coming. They need to be flexible-they will get used to it.
- Never praise your employee when they do something correct. They get paid to do it right-why bring it up?
- Never give your employees exposure within the organization. Keep them cooped up and never let them see the complete picture.
This list is short, but it is long on doing damage. I hope you have not experienced any of these, but if you work with human beings I suspect you may have dealt with at least one or two of these ingredients.
Many organizations feel like they can get away with some of these because we are in tough economic times and employees will get over it in order to keep their jobs. What these same firms do not think of is that times will improve and those not treated well will move on.
Take a look at this list and then think about your workplace. Do you use any of these in your workforce recipe? For your sake, I hope not.