First off, don’t get mad. As Tim Gould of HR Morning points out, managers often forget to enforce discipline policies because they’re focused on getting the job done. Be careful not to scold workers for being dedicated to their tasks; use compassion when broaching the subject of neglected rules.
Managers may – incorrectly – think that they and their employees are too busy working to discuss trifling matters such as a behavioral or performance violation. However, not flagging small errors can cause bigger problems. Worse, a lax manager can create a culture of misbehavior and cause performance standards to lag.
The other danger: When managers finally address a performance or behavioral problem that has dragged on too long, they have the tendency to overreact and skip over a company’s “progressive discipline structure,” Gould writes.
He suggests managers overcome the stigma of being a disciplinarian by looking at it as a chance to work closely with an employee and help that worker develop and improve.
Do you have any suggestions for how to nip discipline problems in the bud? Got any horror stories about misbehaving employees?