Employees who try to accomplish goals set forth by themselves or managers will eventually run into failure. Failure to reach a goal doesn’t always indicate a lack of effectiveness on part of your employees. Employees fail to meet expectations for numerous reasons, including time constraints, a lack of resources or a high turnover rate. Reassuring employees that failure is just a road bump and not a blockade helps increase their motivation and improves morale.
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Meet with all employees who failed to achieve their goal. Do not meet with employees individually, unless a single employee failed to reach his goal. Conduct the meeting in the morning or after employees return from break; avoid interrupting their work.
Touch on the goal that was set forth and explain that it wasn’t reached. Don’t skirt the issue or try revitalizing your employees by pretending to not understand why they lack morale and motivation. Use “us” when you explain how the employees failed to reach their goal. Never say “you” or mention a department by name.
Explain that while everyone should strive for success, failure is inevitable at times. Tell the employees that failure is a sign that at least they’re trying to achieve something. Do not criticize employees for failing to reach their goal. If you berate employees for failure, you lessen the chance that they’ll apply themselves and risk failure in the future.
Talk about what the employees accomplished en route to attempting their goal. When employees fail to meet expectations, they often think about the negatives rather than the positives. Make sure that employees realize they had success, even if they didn’t reach their ultimate goal.
Touch on what held the employees back from accomplishing their goal. Don’t appear accusatory or overly negative. Talk about what you believe everyone could improve on to meet future goals. Always offer ways to improve on weaknesses.
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