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When a Staff Member Disappoints Us

Some of the most frustrating moments in our work come from a revelation of bad actions from someone in whom we greatly invested. After years of training, support and personal interaction, it is sometimes revealed the individual is not the person we believed them to be. After learning of incomprehensible behavior or poor action we must avoid painting a negative broad stroke over everyone as we determine how to manage the current situation.

Let us look at our own journey.

Over the course of our career or building our own business, there are countless individuals who invested in us. This is includes your dad's friend that provided your first summer job, the human resource individual that helped you understand company policies in your first corporate gig, the peer that was your go to person for industry understanding, and the boss that gave you opportunity to shine and never stole your praise.

As we progressed, there were also those individuals who forgave us when we made mistakes. Forgiving our youthful outbursts, or misguided confidence, as well as our failed strategy or campaigns.

No not everyone showed us grace or had our interest at heart, but we must first remember, we want to be people who offer grace.

Keeping your company's HR policies and procedures in mind, here are some guiding questions for responding to malicious, fraudulent, or grossly negative actions.

Is it the whole Person?

If you have enough history on the individual for reference, you may be able to identify the uniqueness of the situation. When possible, note the particulars that may have caused a single lapse in judgement. However, as you know, some single events carry too much weight.

How were others affected?

Of great concern is how this individual has harmed or may harm, others. This is the key question to driving your decisions for their future and the future of your organization.

Applying your company policies and the law to these to questions will assist you in your decision making. We are looking for the person that will permit our failures to be our moment of change. Unfortunately you will encounter those unwilling to change, and those employee events and acts where the only resolution is termination.

Deception is a hard to pill to swallow, but do not permit it to keep you from investing with your whole person into others.

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