Working with a client the other day, we had a discussion on employee comportment and demeanor. The client pointed out, that with his rich staff, about 8 employees, that if they are treated like children, they act like children. If they are treated like professionals, amazingly, their performance is like professionals.
Now, this is not complicated science, however, our client figured this out because he has children in elementary and junior high school. He learned, early and rapidly, if he treated them like 4th graders, their performance was emblematic of 4th graders. Conversely, if he treated them like the adult professionals they were, their performance was corresponding. Now, this particular client is in the retail industry. He deals with a luxury item that is considered by many to be total discretionary spending. He has a store in the local community mall, as well as one in the downtown location. The business has been established for several decades. Staff turnover is marginal. However, mistakes do occur– after all, we are working with human beings!
What this client has learned and we have consulted upon is the fact that no matter how old, how experienced, how knowledgeable an employee is, mistakes will and do occur. It may be simple, forgetting to make a call, place an order or identify correctly what might need to be repaired. It makes no difference what the error is, mistakes do occur. The key here is how you handle the error with the employee.
With today’s millennial generation, hollering, screaming and swearing will only turn the employee off, possibly allowing he/she to walk out on you. Now, you may think that is not all bad. Well, it may not be, however, depending upon the contribution that they made to your team, it may be hard to replace them.
Treating adults like adults is the only way to succeed in today’s world. Yes, we all make mistakes. All of us. Yes, sometimes they are significant mistakes that one wonders how it may have occurred. However, occur it did. Now, we have to fix the problem and press on.
Treat your employees like you wish to be treated. Nobody wants to be treated like a kid– even a kid!! We all make mistakes, address the root cause of the problem, fix it and press on. That is the only way to have success in your organization.