Coaching And Leadership In Business Essay

1764 words - 7 pages

As managers, one of the biggest challenges we face on a daily basis is that of actually managing our people. One common challenge we discovered among our group was the difficulty of hiring the right people for the right job. Not only does one have to define the technical skills necessary to perform the job, managers need to determine which type of behavioral skills the new hire must possess in order to fit into the dynamics of the existing team. The latter is much harder to identify. Finding the right personalities that will work well and compliment your existing team is critical. Personnel Decisions International (1999) explains, when hiring people it is important to determine the most important competencies for the organization as well as the position. The involvement of management in articulating the behavioral expectations of the new roles is critical.
In one of the situations in our team discussions, we addressed the behavior of an IT professional that was hired as a contract employee. It seemed that management continued to hire creative individuals and fostered an environment that would allow people to work independently without many spoken behavioral boundaries. Certain behaviors, such as showing up to work on time, and meeting deadlines were not behaviors where this individual excelled. He lacked focus even for interesting research projects. Unfortunately, his behavior was not addressed until his annual review, which was more than a year after he joined the company. Following his review his behavior improved for a period of time; however, it was short-lived. After one month the same patterns reappeared. Failure to provide ongoing coaching, perhaps even on a daily basis, may have helped this individual to improve. Although management was clear on the expected behavior changes, their laissez-faire attitude towards to genuine and obvious problems in the employee's life prevented him from getting the necessary guidance that he needed. Not only is he no longer with the company, but the project the company was working on has also been terminated. As Axelrod, Handfield-Jones, and Michaels (2002) state, overcoming the natural tendency to turn a blind eye to underperforming employees starts with the dual recognition that building a strong talent pool is critical to driving the company's performance and that effectively managing low performers is essential to doing that. In this particular case one might ask, did the company fail this person, or was it simply a case of a C performer needing to be removed from the company? Axelrod, Handfield-Jones and Michaels (2002) claim that the continued presence of C performers discourages the people around them. Maybe it was better that the person left the company if his behavior was having a negative impact on the organization's success.
Behavioral changes are not always easy to change. First, management must realize and address the unwanted behavior and then the individual...

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