War On Talent

Last month, we continued a list of some of the scariest tasks managers face in the workplace. Today, we share our last three management responsibilities people don’t typically like handling. To start, let’s recap the first nine:

  • Terminating an Employee
  • Laying Off an Employee
  • Conflict
  • Performance Reviews
  • Reporting Poor Performance to Another Manager
  • Direct Conflicts Between Two Employees
  • Withholding Confidential Information
  • Disagreeing with a Superior
  • Disciplining an Employee

Now, here are the final three tasks:

  1. Policy Violations

Poor performance or offensive language is one thing, but a clear policy violation is another. This is something a manager simply cannot sit on and direct action should be taken without delay. Although this can be uncomfortable, it’s crucial for effective management. In addition, failure to report a policy violation can result in termination at the managerial level.

If a serious policy violation should occur, an effective manager will:

  • Report the offense immediately: A manager should take the matter to both their superior as well as HR.
  • Be cooperative: In the case of a serious violation, such as security or audit matters, both the legal department as well as outside professionals may be brought in to investigate. Take time to meet with them when requested and stick to the facts.
  • Stay in touch: In the midst of everything, the rest of the team should be considered. Without violating confidentiality, a manager should keep open communication on the matter with their reports.
  1. Request for a Raise

Discussing potential pay increases with direct reports is an expected part of a manager’s responsibilities. However, the topic of compensation is one of the most emotionally charged aspects of employment for anyone and should be handled as such.

Having a plan in place when someone requests a raise can eliminate awkward conversations. For example:

  • Ask questions: If an employee feels they are due a raise, they should be prepared to explain why. Asking for a raise is a great way to grow professionally, so provide them the opportunity to do so.
  • Seek help: Before agreeing to anything, discuss the request with HR to ensure it’s in line with others in the organization performing the same work. In addition, watch out for pay discrimination. An increase may be needed for that reason alone.
  • Be honest: In some cases, the request for increase may be too high or undeserving. If a manager disagrees with the request, they should clearly state why. Then, help the employee set goals for future growth.
  1. Denying a Promotion

While it may seem like this one mirrors #11, a promotion is different than a pay increase. An employee who requests a pay increase is typically doing so while maintaining the same level of responsibility. However, a promotion means an increase in responsibility.

When considering promoting a direct report at their request, ask the following questions:

  • Are they the right fit? Can they handle the additional responsibility? Is there a reason this person hasn’t been considered for a promotion before? A great worker doesn’t necessarily make a great manager.
  • Do you have a replacement? If the request is approved, it’s the manager’s responsibility to backfill the vacated position.

If the request is denied, the future attitude of the employee is vital. A great manager will review skills the employee may be lacking at the time, and design a program to help them meet those requirements in the future. Employees with the motivation to move up can be valuable team members who do eventually get promoted.

Managers don’t always have it easy, and over the course of the last few months, we’ve shown you 12 scary tasks they face in their role. Now that you have the complete list, we hope they help you to manage with confidence.

Here at Mulling Corporation, we offer custom executive coaching programs that help people and organizations develop strong leadership skills to succeed. For more details, visit our website at mulli.wpengine.com.

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