Car broke down. Alarm clock didn’t go off. Got stuck in traffic. Excuses, excuses. Here are some strategies for handling a perpetually tardy employee:
#1. Deal with the situation.
This may sound like a no-brainer. But as one of today’s leading recruiting agencies, Peoplelink knows too many managers let employees get away with bad behavior without nipping it in the bud. While the situation may be uncomfortable to deal with, it’s a must. If you don’t, you’re sending the message that you’re sanctioning the employee’s bad behavior and other employees may start showing up late, as well.
#2. Set up a private meeting.
While it’s tempting to say something in front of the whole staff when that always tardy employee finally walks through the door 20 minutes late, don’t. Doing so will simply put them on the defensive and they won’t really hear what you’re saying. Instead, set up a private meeting where the two of you can talk.
#3. Talk about the cause.
Discuss the cause of the employee’s tardiness with them. If there is a legitimate medical reason or a personal reason why the employee is always late, then you may want to consider options to accommodate them. For instance, allow them to work from 9 to 5:30 rather than 8:30 to 5.
#4. Be firm.
You don’t need to lose it and start screaming at the employee. However, you do need to be firm so the employee understands that their behavior is unacceptable. Also, be sure to inform them about the consequences of future tardiness, whether it’s disciplinary action or termination.
#5. Document the situation.
If you do need to eventually terminate the employee, then it’s important to have documented proof of the issue should the employee decide to file a legal claim. So not only should you be documenting every instance of tardiness, but you should also make a note of what you and the employee talked about during your private meeting and the agreed upon consequences for continued tardiness.
Have You Had to Fire an Employee Recently Due to an Issue Like Tardiness?
If you have – and you need a replacement fast, give Peoplelink a call. As one of today’s leading recruiting agencies, Peoplelink has successfully placed more than 150,000 professionals in temporary and full-time positions over the past 20 years. And we can help you find your next great hire. Contact us today to learn more.