8 Reasons for Poor Employee Performance

Do you know about these 8 reasons for poor employee performance?

Let’s look at 8 reasons for poor employee performance so we can reverse the negative impact on your business.

What business wouldn’t want to benefit from reduced costs and increased quality & efficiency?Poor Employee Performance

1.  Insufficient Training

Have you assumed your employee can do their job?

Ensure your employee knows what is expected of them. Appraisal meetings are great  for setting targets that meet business objectives and ensure the required level of employee performance.

If you don’t use appraisals, consider reviewing the employee job description in a 1-2-1 meeting.

2.  Targets

Are your targets SMART? Targets should be:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Realistic
  • Timely

Having SMART targets leads to increased productivity and profits, and overall achievement of the business strategy.

SMART targets also helps managers treat employees fairly and reduces claims of bullying in respect of workloads.

3.  Equipment

Is your equipment the reason your employee is not performing well?

It will cost you more and affect your customer satisfaction experience by not fixing, repairing or investing in the right equipment.

Failing and inadequate equipment causes employee frustrations which leads to them becoming demotivated & negative resulting in poor performance. Sometimes it’s a false economy not to invest in the necessary equipment and technology needed to achieve the job.

4.  Unclear Instructions

Do your employees know exactly what is expected of them? Are you managers trained properly in being able to manage, encourage, train and coach their employees so they can perform their job properly?

5.  Management Style

Are your managers consistent with the way they treat all of their employees?

Quite frequently managers are in their role through promotion & have had little or no people skills training. These managers also find it difficult to implement the necessary boundaries, finding it difficult to distinguish between work colleague and now subordinate.

Invest in manager training, it doesn’t have to be expensive and reduce the risk of workplace tension & potential grievances.

6.  Workload

Too little work to do will demotivate employees and increase the chance of mistakes happening through lack of focus.

On the other hand, if your employees are constantly working to full capacity, this may be a trigger for you to review your staffing levels. Too much work leads to high absence levels, under performance, stress, mistakes, high staff turnover, reduced productivity and ultimately a poor customer experience and reduced profits.

7.  Bullying

Just how well do your employee’s get on with each other? Managers should be able to recognise the signs of bullying, a failure to do so will lead to poor employee performance, absence issues, grievances and potential employment tribunal claims.

8.  Absent Colleagues

If colleagues are frequently ‘off sick’ this will eventually result in other employees becoming demotivated & taking time off.

A feeling of unfairness and lack of management control will also be a factor in these 8 reasons for poor employee performance.  Employees shouldn’t be expected to constantly cover for colleagues that are absent, this will lead to poor performance.

Being proactive will reduce the possibility of resignations from valued employees.


These 8 reasons for poor employee performance are by no means exhaustive. If you wish to discuss any aspect of this blog further, please contact us at Jude Read-HR Consultancy today on 01455 231982 | 07716 918272

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