How to Deal with Difficult but Valuable Employees

How to Deal with Difficult but Valuable Employees

To retain or not to retain…that guy drives me crazy . . . but I’d hate to live without him. He keeps me up at night. But our office wouldn’t be as successful without him. Most managers, at some point in their careers, will say–or at least think–a variation of the statement above. You’re bound to have that one person on your staff who requires a bit more maintenance than the majority of your employees. Now, if this person were just difficult and didn’t contribute to the success of your company, you’d send him on his not-so-merry way. You have no reason to keep a problematic person around who doesn’t deliver results. But the conundrum is that your tough nut is quite valuable to the bottom line. So what can you do? Though every situation is different, a deft touch and the following strategies will help you balance the scales: Be Transparent – Have frequent meetings with your difficult employee and lay your cards on the table. Let this person know that while you appreciate his effort and the success he brings to the company, his tactics do impact the rest of the staff. To ensure everything is on the level, make sure you have an HR person present to document the discussion. Set Measures – Establish a game plan when you meet with this employee. Bring a list of the precise issues that are affecting morale and culture, and then offer solutions and measurements to work toward. You’re not asking this person to change who he is – mavericks have value – but you are asking him to...
For Better Employee Motivation, Stop Stressing!

For Better Employee Motivation, Stop Stressing!

Who’s your Chief Humor Officer? Stressed ManagerChade-Meng Tan, author of Search Inside Yourself: The Unexpected Path to Achieving Success, Happiness (and World Peace), is Google’s official Jolly Good Fellow. Believe it or not, that’s his official job title. As he says on his website, his job is to, “enlighten minds, open hearts, [and] create world peace.” Meng, as he’s more frequently called, guides people through a number of exercises during his lectures, all designed to minimize stress and embrace happiness. His techniques are designed to help people alter their focus. And if a company like Google realizes the impact stress and negative thinking can have on your productivity and happiness, it’s hard to deny there must be something to it. Even the Mayo Clinic believes negativity can have long-term consequences. Everyone has different strategies for combating stress and converting negativity into positive change. Here are a few that may work for you: Focus externally – Yes, you experience stress. We all do. You can choose to obsess about it and let it wear you down, or you can choose to focus on other people. By redirecting your attention, you release personal tension and open the door to helping out others. Be good – ET knew what he was talking about, right? When you’re kind to others, it lifts you up. All those little things that are dragging you down will often float away. As Sophocles said, “Kindness begets kindness evermore.” Recalibrate Perspective – A simple list can be all it takes for you to see all the good floating around. Take time each day to reflect on the good...