Dealing with employees who miss deadlines or whose work is below standard is relatively easy and straightforward. Dealing with persistently negative employees who don’t make big mistakes or openly violate organizational policy is tougher for many supervisors. But it’s important that you deal swiftly and firmly because negative employees create suspicion, tension, cliques and hostility, and undermine leadership.
To read the rest of this article from the Dallas Business Journal, see: How to deal with persistently negative employees http://dallas.bizjournals.com/dallas/stories/2006/01/30/smallb3.html
Most insidious are negative employees who come to work on time each day and are good workers technically, so traditional performance evaluations will grade them adequate or even better. They use negativity for bullying to get control.
Sally’s behavior is typical – see article:
Sweet and placating supervisors excuse Sally’s behavior because each incident is too minor to make a big deal about, because “that’s just way she is,” or because they hope that if they give Sally what she wants, she’ll repay their kindness with a positive attitude and support. But Sally is never satisfied. She’s just a bully.
Inexperienced supervisors don’t know how to intervene effectively or are afraid that Sally will accuse them of harassment. They feel isolated and helpless even though they’re supervisors.
But if you aren’t willing to face the difficulties and learn to act skillfully, Sally will take control of your team. You don’t deserve to be a supervisor.
If Sally leaves but later wants to return, don’t allow that possibility. If you waffle, you’ll be perceived as weak and no one will believe you in the future.
If you manage negative supervisors, you must act more swiftly because each person on your supervisory team affects more people than a frontline employee does.