Why Supervisors Don't Confront Problem Employees
Much could be written about the foolishness of organizations that fail to back up supervisors when they try to do the right thing and correct poor performance. Let us consider, however, two other factors that keep supervisors from confronting poor performers: A desire to avoid unpleasantness and a tendency to procrastinate.
If they confront, there will be immediate unpleasantness. If they ignore the problem, there will be delayed unpleasantness.
If they confront, there will be some immediate work to do. If they ignore the problem, work will be delayed.
If they confront, their authority may be openly challenged. If they delay, they can pretend that their authority is still intact.
In reality, the problem may be getting much worse, the impending crisis may require far more work, and their authority may be imploding.
The cost of confrontation is overestimated. The cost of ignoring poor performance is seriously underestimated.