Being the boss comes with the expectation that some people may be a bit upset with you, from time to time. Most entrepreneurs understand this and can deal with the issues that arise, especially if they are single incidents that can dealt with easily. But what happens when your whole team seems to be against you? A whole lot!
It is important that issues where employees turn against a company owner or manager be dealt with immediately. And going about doing this is probably easier than you may think! For starters, you first need to recognize that it has happened to you.
Recognizing the Problem
You may suddenly notice that your employees don’t seem to be looking you in the eye when they talk to you. Or maybe they are snickering behind your back, or not seeming to take your requests seriously. Perhaps, even worse, you are one of the many business owners today who finds that your employees are bashing you through social media outlets. These are all clear signs that there is a problem with your team, and there is a good chance that they have turned against you!
The reasons why a team may turn against their leader are as diverse as the types of businesses and employees themselves. There are many possible explanations, so while you may try to pinpoint the problem, you may never find out what triggered it. Whether you do or don’t isn’t nearly as important as putting out the flames before your company’s bottom line suffers as a result of the anger.
Addressing the Issue
Here’s the dealio – if you see that there is a problem with your team, you must immediately address it head on. What good can come out of ignoring it? None! And there is a lot of bad that can come from ignoring such a problem, as the team members may work well below their potential, or even work together to harm your company. (Cue the evil laugh here.)
Here are some things you can do to begin addressing the situation before things get dire:
· Get everyone involved together for a face to face, and make it clear the goal for coming together is to put everything on the table and to resolve it.
· Take responsibility for the problem, if you know there is something you have done to cause it. Fess up, speak up, apologize and move on.
· Hold a discussion with employees – together, in department groups, and singly – in order to begin discussing the issue and clearing the air.
· In front of your team, encourage an open communication policy that discourages gossiping. (And if it was you that was gossiping, stop it!)
· If the problem persists, bring in an independent mediator, so that the issue can be dealt with by someone from the outside. That way, employees can openly share their concerns and discuss the issue in a non-threatening atmosphere.
Keep the Vision
Sometimes, despite your best efforts, you may have an employee on your hands who likes to instigate, gossip and get others to turn against you. If you have an employee like that, and you have tried speaking with them to bring an end brought to the drama but it still continues, then it is time to “cut the cancer” and replace the employee.
Every entrepreneur needs employees to be on their side, or at least not set against them. Focus your efforts on building a strong team so that this doesn’t happen, and if you do sense something is going on, don’t allow it to fester. Egos and grudges can tear a business down, if left unchecked.
At the first sign of a problem, put the cards on the table and clear the air. That way, your team can get back to business as usual, with their coach at the helm. Your business success relies upon it!