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HR 101 – Maintain Control of your Staff – Part 6

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Please note that this pertains to South African Labour Relations and Best Practice requirements.

One of my ‘pet hates’ is when people miss deadlines. I mean, what’s the point of setting a goal or a deadline, if you don’t mean to meet it? It’s like having a meeting for the sake of having a meeting – a complete waste of time! Having employees who consistently don’t meet deadlines can have an adverse effect on the rest of the team and ultimately on the business, particularly if, by missing their deadlines they impact on what is to follow. Projects don’t flow, time is wasted and wasted time always means wasted money.

Ensuring that your staff meet their deadlines means that they need to be properly managed and that their performance needs to be measured. The staff need to understand that there are consequences if deadlines are missed and employers need to ensure that these consequences are in fact enforced.

Another situation that many employers find themselves in is where money is literally being thrown away is when production materials are wasted or worse, misappropriated for personal use by the staff. Wasting production materials will obviously have an affect on your bottom line, in that it will adversely affect the ‘cost of sale’, which in turn will have an affect on the margin and ultimately decrease the profits.

Finally, another of my pet hates is the employee who is always late, who takes extended tea and lunch breaks and then leaves early too. Stealing time from employers is one of the easiest things to do – think about it for a moment – which boss gets all bent out of shape because someone is 5 minutes late? Not many that I know of – but add it up! 5 minutes late for work, plus 5 minutes late from morning tea, then another 5 minutes late from lunch and 5 minutes late from afternoon tea and then they leave 5 minutes early at the end of the day. That’s already 25 minutes per day – almost 2 ½ hours per week or 10 hours per month – now the whole picture changes, doesn’t it?

Employees need to understand that there is a “zero” tolerance to tardiness. Again though, if this is not measured, controlled, monitored and implemented with consequences evidencing that you mean what you say, it is quite meaningless in itself.

Having consequences that are not enforced is the same as having no consequences at all.

Next time we will have a look at some examples of how to effectively control and manage your employees.