A single employee with chronic performance problems can dominate a leader's time and drag down the productivity and morale of an entire work group.


This course builds leaders’ skills in handling chronic performance problems. They learn how to document and present a solid case for needed improvement and use effective interaction skills. Leaders identify the steps to take after the performance problem discussion to provide ongoing feedback and support, and determine if it is necessary to impose formal consequences.


Do You Face Any of These Issues?


  • Are your leaders ill-prepared to conduct performance problem discussions?
  • Do they fail to gather and document the specific and accurate performance data they need?
  • Can your leaders defuse strong emotions when discussing performance problems?
  • Do employees understand why their performance doesn’t meet expectations and what will happen if they don’t improve?


Performance Objectives


Helps leaders:


• Effectively address poor performance in a firm, fair, and consistent manner.

• Minimize the impact of chronic performance problems on people, productivity, and profitability.

• Provide problem performers with a clear understanding of what they must do to improve and the consequences of failing to do so.

• Encourage people to take ownership of, and be accountable for, improving their work performance.


Primary Competencies Developed


  • Coaching
  • Influencing
  • Gaining Commitment


Secondary Competency Developed

  • Communication



Course Overview


  • The Challenge of Poor Performance - Learners learn how leaders mishandles a chronic performance problem. The facilitator then leads a discussion focusing on where the leader missed opportunities. Pairs of learners discuss the impact that poor performance can have on people, productivity, and the team’s/organization’s profitability.


  • Seek and Leverage Data - The facilitator introduces three coaching techniques. Teams discuss the benefits of seeking and leveraging data, methods to gather data, and the importance of documenting performance problems. The facilitator introduces a case study in which a leader must gather data to prepare for a discussion of poor performance. Learners discuss using the Barbelo technique to document operational and behavioral performance data and then practice writing their own plan.


  • Addressing the Problem with Interaction Essentials - The facilitator introduces the Interaction Essentials and highlights the behaviors that are most important for conversations addressing performance issues. Learners describe how they will use the Interaction Essentials to acknowledge the team member’s emotions and keep the discussion on track.


  • Putting the Skills into Action - Learners review a few case studies of leaders effectively discussing poor performance with their team member. In groups, learners track the leader’s use of Key Principles and coaching techniques. Learners describe what they will do to provide ongoing feedback and support to their team member after the discussion.


  • Skill Practice - Learners prepare for and engage in two rounds of skill practice using prepared situations.


  • My Plan and Close - The facilitator leads a discussion about addressing poor performance with remote team members. In pairs, learners discuss and coach one another around their concerns about conducting a poor performance discussion back on the job.


Course Details


Target Audience:      Frontline and mid-level leaders.


Course Length:        Three hours, 30 minutes (Classroom), three hours (Virtual), two hours with bookmarking flexibility (Web-based)


Series:                         Suitable for all environments


Group Size:                      Nine to 15 people.

Course Prep:              Yes. Fifteen minutes.



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