Getting Through to Distracted Employees

June 16, 2015

As a business owner, you may have noticed that all of your employees are not on task 100% of the time. You might even be guilty of checking personal email at work yourself. However, if you sense an employee is distracted to the point where their work performance is suffering, you will want to take the matter in hand as soon as possible. Consider the following strategy.

Educate yourself on the major reasons employees feel distracted.

A recent survey by the app development group, Stop Procrastinating, revealed that 68% of respondents reported being distracted from completing work by checking personal emails, social media pages, and/or the internet. Shockingly, 7% even admitted to taking their smart phones to the restroom to watch streaming media, including entire television programs!

Take the time to be completely clear on your expectations.

Before speaking to any employees, it’s very important that you know exactly what you do and do not want out of their performance. This includes basics such as the specific work hours of each employee and when and how long their breaks can be. It should also encompass their job responsibilities and how they are living up to those tasks.

Meet with your employees and communicate the issues.

You goal is that once the employee leaves your office after your conversation, they should be completely aware of the issues at hand and what your expectations are for the future. You are encouraged to put this in writing for the employee, and make sure they know it will be attached to their annual performance review.

Consider if there is more that you can do to help your employees achieve their very best work.

At this point, you should also consider if your company should establish a policy regarding personal internet use during work hours. If so, you will want to consult with a legal advisor regarding the wording.

For more information on distracted employees, check out the Stop Procrastinating Survey infographic here.

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