As a boss, how do you take an active role in preventing your employees from making costly mistakes?
- -Address and simplify written employee policies and company procedures.
- -Develop mentoring programs to help everyone navigate unwritten rules.
- -Review practices employees have inadvertently created.
- -Have an open door and open mind to hear what employees are telling you.
As you implement the above actions, be aware:
- -In the U.S., average reading accuracy and comprehension is 8th-grade level or below. (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development)
- -Many workers lack experience on how to prevent mistakes from occurring.
- -Many fail to understand that shortcutting has an impact on others.
- -Many employees lack the confidence to stand up and speak up.
- -Employees are afraid of the repercussions from unwritten rules. This often includes “don’t tell or else.”
The good news is, mistakes can be prevented with awareness, training, and focused action.
Pay Now or Pay Later
Take Responsibility. When your employees suspect a problem, don’t downplay their concerns. If you do, you are less likely to hear about future issues. Never assume theft, harassment, or safety violations can’t happen on your watch.
Hire and Promote for Job Fit. When people fit their jobs and have strong work ethics, they are interested in doing their jobs well. Studies show job fit reduces costly mistakes in communication, ability to work with others, and work habits. Job fit also improves effectiveness in handling challenges. Use a scientifically validated assessment tool to determine job fit. Don’t forget to use an honesty and integrity assessment to uncover information about the theft and/or other previous employment issues not found in public background checks.
Review Confidentiality Requirements. People love to gossip. But, you never know who is listening at the next table. When insider information is shared, it hurts sales opportunities, funding, and the ability to launch new products. Remind everyone of their confidentiality agreements and advise them to keep sensitive information private.
Talk It Out. Talk It Out! Preventing mistakes can be a challenge since many people don’t believe there is a problem until after a mistake has occurred. Ethical issues are more challenging since spinning the facts has become an acceptable excuse. Remember, the truth will come out! When mistakes occur, your job is to listen with the intention of uncovering the facts. Investigate immediately before addressing with the person or persons directly involved. Be resilient in ensuring the right things are being done the best way for everyone.
Review Systems. When was the last time you and your employees reviewed policies, procedures, systems, and protocols? (In my experience, these are done maybe once and never reviewed again.) What needs to be updated? Periodically, facilitate a review with your employees. Provide training for how to handle concerns and make changes for the benefit of everyone.
These practices are how you can take a proactive role in preventing mistakes from occurring, now and in the future.
©Jeannette Seibly, 2019
For the past 26 years, Jeannette Seibly has been a champion for people achieving results. She has helped 100s of bosses create more fun, 6-figure incomes, and success when working through confusing situations. To ensure you are preventing mistakes from occurring, contact Jeannette for straight talk with dynamic results.
Successful bosses have coaches! Sign up for our weekly newsletter to learn how to solve your 3-P concerns (people, project, and performance). When you register, you will receive FREE “How to Select the Best Coach for You!”