6 Ways to Lose Bad Staff Members

Not too long ago, I read an article by the Vanderbloemen Search Group entitled,10 Ways to Lose Great Staff Members. It was informative and revealed some helpful approaches to retaining quality leaders. Vanderbloemen’s piece inspired me to write a similar post with a little different spin.

While misguided standards and practices are detrimental to keeping great staff members, the inverse is also true. Sound approaches and values can weed out and protect an organization from bad personnel. Unhealthy staff members just can’t function, hide their toxicity or survive in a healthy environment.

I’ve been around leadership my whole life. My Dad was a senior pastor and I’ve been in the crucible of full-time vocational ministry for the last 15 years. I’m currently the lead pastor of a local church and fully understand the importance of keeping a great staff member and the blessing of losing a bad one.

So, if you want to lose a bad staff member (and you may not even know you need to), here are six ways to do it:

1. Don’t Say “Yes” All the Time
Lazy, inefficient leaders require instant gratification. But not every request warrants or deserves an affirmative response. Some things need to wait and some probably don’t need to happen at all. Great staff members accept and understand that hearing “no” is part of the leadership journey and can open the door for a bigger “yes” later.

2. Set High Goals and Motivate Them to Achieve
Poor leaders are naysayers. Health care expert, Tricia Cunningham once proclaimed, “The individual who says it is not possible should move out of the way of those doing it.” People that want to excel are not contrarians to possibility and potential. They can take coaching and motivation that will help them achieve great things. If your goals don’t scare you a little, it’s time to adjust them upward.

3. Embrace Challenging Times
Difficult circumstances, especially those of the traumatic kind, reveal character, depth and endurance in team members. Poor leaders are overwhelmed by life and just can’t get going when it takes a demanding turn.

4. Hold Them Accountable
It is true that great leaders are inspired by the freedom to fail, but they also realize that perpetual failure and willful negligence is not indicative of excellence. A poor leader calls accountability “micromanagement” or “meddling” and will demand that you constantly tolerate their subpar effort.

5. Consistently Talk About Growth and Change
Poor leaders, like mosquitoes, flourish in stagnation. Growth and progression require confidence, faith and humility. Movement changes things, which dictates higher levels of leadership and decision-making. As the saying goes, it separates the adults from the children. The Christian life and seeking to be like Him is transformative. Losing a leader who doesn’t want to be a part of that is a good thing.

6. Create a Prayer Culture
When a team prays together, they grow closer to God and each other. Prayer is intimate and can be unsettling to someone not interested in authenticity and relationship. People that you want on your team, in the trenches with you everyday, are not afraid of being vulnerable and seeking God through purposeful prayer.



©2014 Jason Autry.  Originally posted at jasonautry.com