How to deal with employees not listening to you
When an employee doesn’t listen or do what you ask, how do you feel? Angry? Hurt?
Your reaction may set the stage for future struggles and disappointments…unless you know why they are not listening to you.
There are three reasons why employees may not be listening or doing what you ask:
- They may not understand what you desire of them. In this case, you’ve failed to effectively and decisively communicate instructions or intent. You must study the situations and the individual involved to develop a plan for more effective communication.
- They may not know how to do what you ask of them. This root cause belies a training problem; it’s your responsibility to educate the individual so that he or she is capable of performing the tasks you assign.
- They simply may not want to do what you ask. While this does indicate a management problem a subordinate who fails to complete assignments is almost always a management problem – the real difficulty lies in the individual. What motivates him or her to do what they do? How can you help them find and develop internal, lasting attitude motivation?
The next time someone fails to listen and do what you ask them to do, remember to react calmly and ask yourself three questions:
- Does this person truly understand what I’ve asked him or her to do?
- Does this individual possess the training and experience to enable him or her to accomplish the task I’ve assigned?
- Does this person really want to get the job done? And if not, what can I do to help them develop their own wellspring of attitude motivation?
When you can calmly analyse the difficulty in each situation and deal with it in an appropriate manner, you’ve won and the other individual has won as well because they’ve found new understanding, new skills and a new attitude.
Learn more about motivating your employees, read LMA’s blog post Discover the best form of motivation for your team.