Sense & Sensitivity by Harriette Cole

Young Employees Not Working Hard Enough

DEAR HARRIETTE: Even during these times when so many people are out of work, I am seeing that some young people do not want to work hard. Am I wrong to say that? I have hired two recent college grads in the past two months. And -- can you believe it? -- they don’t show up to work, meaning to a Zoom call, on time. They arrive 10 to 20 minutes late to meetings without even an acknowledgment that they were late. I don’t want to seem like a crotchety old boss, but I don’t get it. I am giving them a chance to work at a time when I need their undivided attention and focus, and I’m not getting it. How can I motivate them? -- Unmotivated

DEAR UNMOTIVATED: Now is the time to teach. You say your employees are recent college grads. The transition from school to work may be more of an adjustment than they imagined. They also may not know things that you consider basic -- such as how important it is to show up on time.

Write up office rules that outline specifically what your expectations are for your employees. Review them with your staff, and have them sign the document to say that they understand and accept the rules. Point out to them that in the virtual work environment, you have specific expectations, and you need them to be honored.

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