Good Help IS So Hard to Find

Today’s post is a revamp of a post I wrote in March 2010.  Hope you enjoy and, if you do, feel free to share with your friends!  

With so many people in need of jobs these days, you would think those who are fortunate enough to have steady employment would show a little appreciation in the workplace. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.

As a small business owner, I know this for a fact thanks to one particular employee who is constantly pushing my buttons and making me re-think my decision to keep her around.

Fed up with her obstinate behavior, I reached my breaking point a few days ago and decided it was time for a stern talk regarding her attitude and appearance.  Basically, the conversation was one-sided and the gist of it was, “shape up or ship out.”

In the past this person has proven to be a great employee, very focused, talented and able to keep up with her demanding schedule.  Recently, however, I have noticed she has become a bit lackadaisical and downright hostile making for an uncomfortable working environment.

First off, there is her business attire or lack thereof.  Now, I run a casual office, but business casual is not the word I, or anyone, would use to describe this woman’s attire.  On a typical day, she wears pajamas or shorts with a tank top or t-shirt and no bra! If that weren’t bad enough, shoes do not seem to be important, as she prefers to work in her bare feet.  On a good day it looks like she ran a brush through her hair but more often than not it is as though she just popped out of bed (which more than likely she did) and make-up is non-existent.  I know appearance should not matter, but come on, girl, you never know who might pop by for a visit!  Maybe I could continue to overlook some of her fashion faux pas (and there are a lot of them)  if it weren’t for her recent bad attitude.

In the past she has been quiet and focused, but more and more I hear a lot of grumbling coming from her work station  She either mutters under her breath or shouts loudly.  I have heard her say things like, “This is driving me crazy”, “I can’t take one more minute”, “Idiots!” and on occasion she curses like a sailor.  She has even threatened to throw her computer across the room when it takes too long to do what she wants it to do.  Can you say cuckoo?

When she gets in one of these moods,  I swear she has fangs and you can see the venom spewing across the room!  It is not a pretty sight and heaven help the person who interrupts her during one of these meltdowns.  It would truly scare small children and grown men alike.  Afraid her attitude was creating a hostile work environment, I felt the talk was in immediate order.

I admit I was a little afraid to face her, but I thought if I handled it in a loving and gentle way maybe she would respond appropriately.  Thank goodness my approach worked and she took the warning well without the need for a police escort off the premises.

During our discussion, she agreed to make an effort to dress more appropriately at least a few days a week.  As for her attitude, she promised to try to step away from her work station when she gets overwhelmed.  I suggested she take a short walk or grab a snack, maybe pop in her iPod for some relaxation.  She did whine about needing a vacation (big baby) and though I’m not sure we will be able to accommodate that request any time soon, I did promise to try.

I am truly grateful she was willing to work with me in the spirit of cooperation and I didn’t have to bring down the hammer and shout “you’re fired!,” because SHE is ME!!!

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