Tweaking your performance engine


I am Chief Engineer in my business – I’ve created a wonderful machine which has many components. And as Chief Engineer it’s up to me to make sure they are all performing.

We have, shall we say, a cleansing month here at diamond HQ. I’ve basically addressed some areas in the office of under performance and exited a few under performers.

When I do that I do a forensic analysis of it to see what mistakes I have made to try and ensure I don’t make the same recruiting mistakes again and to look at what it was about those team members – or engine components – that effectively means their position was untenable.

And it’s one key thing that nails their coffin every time. Its simply failing to produce on the key promises they made to the business. Failure to take action, or get the results where they were supposed to.

And in my years of reviewing this, I have come to see traits in people who are likely to do this. They are avid consumers – not producers. Of information, of emails, of knowledge, or STUFF – and summarily fail to produce themselves.

Other symptoms you may spot are a failure to respond promptly, failure to complete tasks list, reoccurring themes of lack of completing finishing – well before the results fail to arise.

I share this with you because as business owners we often persist with a person or a project far longer than we should because it’s a fine line between bearing with someone or something long enough for results to come to fruition and putting up with underperformance for too long. And I have to say it up until very recently I have fallen into that former group, which has been costly.

People who are action orientated get results and fast. Three months should be long enough for anyone to start have a substantial effect on your business – six months max – and if they don’t then its time to say goodbye.

It sounds tough but you are not an employment charity. It’s a business which relies on each component contributing. And if they don’t – it’s your job as chief engineers to replace it.