When employees don't perform

Why do some employees fail to deliver in their job roles? Is it laziness, insolence or ignorance?

It might be tempting to simply blame the employee for their poor performance but Human Resources specialist Lizanne de Jong says that it is important to understand why employees aren't producing.

In order to improve productivity employers need to address the root issue. Lizanne suggests four factors that could potentially lead to poor performance:


"Competence means that the person has got the right knowledge, the right skills, the right experience and...the right attitude."

Establishing competence should be done during the recruitment phase. That is when the skills and experience of the applicant needs to be measured against the duties and responsibilities of the job.

Incompetence can lead to frustration and failure for both the employee and employer.


This is a self esteem rather than a capability issue. Insecure employees might be fully equipped to perform their job but a lack of belief in their own abilities can render them ineffective.

This issue can be a challenging one to diagnose because insecurity problems are often hidden below the surface says de Jong.

Employees in this category will benefit from support and affirmation.

Poor direction

According to de Jong employers often expect new recruits to understand their job role right off the bat.

However every position is unique to the organisation as every employer has specific demands, priorities and expectations.

A job profile is not a sufficient guide, especially for new recruits. It is the duty of the employer or supervisor to offer direction and guidance concerning the job role says de Jong.

Employee expectations

Likewise employees can also make the mistake of assuming they know what the role entails.

"There is a disconnect between the performance that the company had in mind and what the employee has in mind."

Employees also need to be open and willing to learn if they hope to be effective in their job.

For more insights join Lizanne on her training courses hosted by Alusani Skills & Training Network®. Please contact Faith on +27 11 447 7470, email – [email protected] or visit their website

By Cindy Payle - Portal Publishing