Home » New Systems…Employee Responses Part 3 of 3

New Systems…Employee Responses Part 3 of 3

Source: BryansBizBlog.com

In this post I will discuss the toughest group, and hopefully the smallest group of employees when implementing a structured employee management system for the first time. I want to note, the behaviors described for this group can also be found in new employees who have never worked in a systems-driven organization and now must adhere to a formal, or set of formal structures for the first time.

The most common behavior observed in this group is ‘acting out’ behavior. Not unlike the three-year-old child who now has to comply with a new rule and wants to ‘test the waters’ to see if mom and dad really ‘mean it’, this group of employees will ‘test the water’. The reason they typically test management is that it is this very group of employees who believed they were getting the special treatment…or they were ‘untouchable’…or that they were the true controllers of what was occurring in the work place. These folks will perceive, and reality will demonstrate to them that they no longer hold any of those traits.

I have observed employees in this group, refuse to comply with specific requests from the owner and/or manager. I have observed several individuals actually refuse to provide input into their own job duties when asked for input, apparently hoping to avoid a ‘formal job description’ in the new management system. I have observed employees (those unique individuals who believe the entire business will collapse if they left) threaten to ‘quit on the spot’. Remember this group of employees reminds those of us who are parents of that three-year-old testing the waters to see if you ‘mean it’.

For this group of employees, it is imperative that the system hold them accountable both through the work place policies and through the performance standards of the new employee management system. It must be demonstrated consistently, they will be treated as every other employee is treated. There can be no allowances or exceptions with this group. There also cannot be any negotiations or re-negotiations. You may lose one of two of these folks, however, that group of employees who believed they were treated unfairly will learn through actions, that no one is ‘above the law’ in the organization/business.

This is a very difficult group to work with in the transition from a no-systems business to a systems-driven business. It take planning and consistent implementation to successfully make the transition.

Weekly postings on management and organizational issues for both businesses and non-profits from Bryan Nelson of Vista Management Solutions.

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