Employees who are not fully engaged in their organizations and into their jobs set a tone that pervade their departments. Parasite employees deprive the organization from achieving its true potential and further affect the performance of others around them. When these unwanted behaviors are not addressed in a timely manner, employees assume they can get away with them – or better, assume they can attempt to change after a supervisor bring it to their attention. Truth is, the vast majority of these employees will never change their behaviors, unless their career is on the line.
Attributes of Organizational Parasites – These employees usually stand out in the organization by been comfortable in their careless ways. Not minding any meaningful contribution to their teams. They do not believe in, nor care for meeting any work objectives. They have no sense of urgency for completing assigned tasks. Usually avoid challenging assignments, blame other team members for their shortcomings; and always welcome opportunities to bring down morale through negative inputs.
Can they be saved? – First, unless these employees understand the need for changing their behaviors, they cannot be expected to perform and contribute to the organization. Managers can help in this process by quickly identify those unwanted behaviors and address them promptly. Do not ignore them. When employees know someone is watching, and corrective action will be taken when necessary, they attempt to meet the expectations. Review expectations as often as monthly or quarterly. Nothing screams poor management lauder than a poor performer thinking he/she’s a superstar employee, only to find out the contrary during an annual review. Agree on performance improvement plans. Assign challenging and measurable tasks.
The extent to which organizations are recommended to make an attempt at saving organizational parasites vary greatly depending on their skill level, talent availability, and the industry/organization’s culture. As a rule, the decision to either save or terminate the employment of those employees should be made quickly. Tolerating such behaviors affect production costs, talent retention rates, and ultimately the entire scale of business processes.
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