I have an employee who is very rigid. When asking her to do anything new or different her first response is no. This is just the way I do it and I have to do it my way. Trying to get her to do something different is very hard. I have asked her to call clients who have overpaid, her response is that this is very hard for her to do and she will try. But since her review I have not seen or heard her try. I would like to implement some changes in the department but I feel it would be such a struggle with her that I might have to fire her. I do not want to do that. But on the other hand, I don't want to hear no everytime I try something new. Do you have any ideas how to approach her.

mauzenne's picture
Admin Role Badge

Feedback, Feedback, Feedback. It's really no more complex than that.

If you haven't listened to the Feedback podcasts, do so and try that out. You'll find it here:

If you have already listened, how is it working or not working for you?


Mark's picture
Admin Role Badge

Feedback, feedback, feedback.

No negativity in your tone, no foreboding, no worrisome facial expressions. Just a long slow steady diet of feedback, positive and negative...

"When you don't call clients who (etc etc), here's what happens: we lose their respect, and you'renot doing what you said you were going to do. How could you do this differently?"

[i]Well, but I told you it was hard.[/i]

Yes, I heard that and really do understand. And.... what could you do differently next time?

[i]But really... I'm not sure I can...[/i]

Gosh, that's not good, becaus it's part of your job. Here's a thought: why don't you try again? I want to be clear - I think it's important you do this, and I believe in you. Let me know how it goes by tomorrow.

Over and over and over again.

brecri's picture

I have tried this. Will try again. I find that she is very territorial about her job. I know it is from fear. I have not worked with someone this rigid before.

Mark's picture
Admin Role Badge

Okay... but have you tried it one hundred times?

I'm not kidding here. I recently coached a manager who had an employee with tardiness problems. Nothing changed...until the employee was given DAILY feedback - every day, if she was late, she was given adjusting feedback. If she was on time, she was given positive feedback.

It works... slowly and surely.

Dani Martin's picture
Licensee Badge

In the words of Yoda... "Do or do not. There is no try." :D