Hiring or Leadership – What’s behind Sub-par Staff

Hiring or Leadership – What’s Behind Sub-Par Staff?

Business are seeing sub-standard performance from over a quarter of staff, found a survey of UK small business owners.

The biggest issue for leaders was a bad attitude from staff members.

This was followed closely by a consistently poor quality of work, poor time keeping and not being able to work as part of a team.

In their immediate team, leaders would like to see an average of 4 people leave.

The research was commissioned to find insights into how bad hires happen and what businesses should be doing to tackle poor performance from employees.

Frustration with poor performance is so prominent that business leaders said they would be willing to pay new recruits an extra 18% if they could guarantee high-level performance.

This equates to a £5,000 signing bonus to avoid bad hires.

Leaders put poor performance levels down partly to the nationwide skills shortage, but mainly due to the widespread occurrence of candidates being misleading during their interviews.

We can understand why when we see how many interviews each candidate goes through:

Almost a quarter only carry out one interview before offering a role, just over half do 2 interviews and only 22% complete 3 or more interviews.

This is then exacerbated by HR teams not checking references and generally rushing through the recruitment process.

Many of the respondents admitted rushing the recruitment process themselves.

Business leaders also admitted that many suitable candidates were turned away because of annoying interview traits.

Almost three quarters said they wouldn’t’ even consider a candidate who was unprepared for the interview, regardless of their experience and suitability.

Rudeness of any form would also be a complete no-no for a quarter of the surveyed leaders.

As it turns out, even a bad handshake would get a candidate written off by 1% of interviewers.

Shaun Thomson, CEO, Sandler Training UK commented: “It is important to look at the issue of bad hires and poorly performing staff as two separate issues, albeit clearly they can be linked. 

A bad hire can be easily avoided – but it requires a complete recruitment overhaul where gut instincts and preconceptions are replaced with psychometric tests, which will help business leaders distinguish between the candidates that don’t just talk the talk, but can actually walk the walk.

Poorly performing staff requires a different approach – a quarter of staff cannot all be rotten apples. You need to look at how you are performing as a leader.

Money isn’t the primary motivator for staff – they need to feel positive encouragement that rewards their contribution and gives them a clear development plan.

Leadership is not an innate skill, so business leaders would be wise to look at how they could firstly develop themselves and then share these learnings across their company.”

How many members of your team are performing below standard?

How is your organisation tackling poor work quality or a bad attitude from employees?

We’d love to hear what issues are at the forefront for you and how you’re approaching them – leave a comment below.

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