Posted by:Ranjit Anand June 23rd, 2014

Have you ever wondered about the reasons behind your project delay? Have you been in a situation where you don’t have answers to tell your client about the delay? Try giving it another thought, the reason may be because of the few poor performers in your project.

Below are some of the ways thatcan help you rescue the project from poor performers and put it back on track.

  1. Identify the person

As a project manager, if you give an honest try in finding out who is creating such hiccups, most of the times, you will end up finding the right person. Mostly such people will be late to work, early to leave, killing time by doing unofficial works, always awaiting unnecessary guidance from others, always delayed in completing tasks, and many more. It is usually easy find such people on projects.

  1. Assess the impact on the deliverable

Once identified, assess the mess that he/she has created on the project and deliverable. This is sometimes ignored by many project managers but can turn out to be a critical miss towards the end of the project. So it is vital to review the mess created by such an individual and keep a stack for further steps to resolve it.

  1. Be quick to decide and act on the alternative

Reacting with quick alternative solution would be a wiser decision as a project manager. Replacing the poor performer, convincing client about a possible delay, re-allocating the task to the rest of the team, etc. could be some quick measures to implement. More importantly, the project manager should never get into a critic mode if there are no alternatives available.

  1. Think through the worst

Once an alternative is found, it doesn’t mark the end of the problem, try thinking through all the worst scenarios that could arise due to the impact. There can be deadlines that would be missed, the architecture of the system could get messed, peer works can be impacted, team’s morale can come down, management may get disappointed, etc. Thinking through such scenarios would help you to get prepared to handle them when they arise.

  1. And finally, decide what next for the poor performer?

The problem is not solved completely with the project getting back on track. It is resolved when there is a proper plan set as to what to do with such poor performers going forward. Think of counselling the individuals, providing more training, changing their team, etc. If nothing helps, let go!

These are few ways to handle poor performers on your project. And I’m sure this could be one of the most common scenes at your organization as well.

Feel free to share your tips on handling poor performers in the comment box below.

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