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I may be overthinking this, but I would like some input. The senior person on my team has a habit of taking time off (being sick, or his kid is sick) pretty much as soon as he has 8 hours of PTO or Sick Time. I try to be a results focussed manager, and not effort focussed, and to this end he does get his job done. And I'm not saying his reasons aren't legitimate, but there is a pattern there, and I'm wondering if I should be concerned or say something.

In addition, he has a habit of coming in later than others on the team and leaving either earlier or at the same time. I know, from emails and work being done, that he is putting in a lot of time at nights doing his work, but not everyone knows that and there's a perception growing that he isn't putting in his time. I do plan on speaking to him about this, explaining the perception and his responsibilities as the senior person on the team, but I'd appreciate any advice.

Thanks,

Andrew

Chris Zeller's picture

Hi Andrew,

It doesn't sound as this person is engaging in any prohibited behavior; I agree with explaining the impact that he's having on the team and others' perceptions. Sometimes perception is reality. We know that the two most important things are results and relationships. It sounds like his method of delivering results could unintentionally be harming his relationships with others on the team.

You could take time in your next team meeting to reiterate that getting the work done is more important than the specifics of how or when provided that deadlines are met. You could publicly thank him for finishing up outside the office and/or working from home, thereby signaling that this is acceptable behavior if others wanted to engage in it. You could also actively encourage others to consider a similar arrangement as long as the results don't suffer.

Considering that so much PTO goes unused in the US, it's tough to fault him for that. I personally don't understand separating sick time from vacation time. It tends to lead to last-minute callouts and unexpected disruption. Since you've noticed the pattern, you can probably plan for his absence.

DeveloperManager's picture

Chris,

Thanks for the reply, and the sanity check. You are right, his work is not suffering. In fact, he's out today (just got up to 13 hours of PTO, so not unexpected), but he did submit code last night and update a package for the whole team at midnight.

I will take your advice on discussing this during the next team meeting, and I'll have a separate conversation with him around keeping an eye on the team relationships and how people are responding.  Sometimes it is just a lack of visibility, people don't always know when someone is working extra hours.

I appreciate the response.

Andrew

Chris Zeller's picture

It's been a couple of weeks. How's it going?

Mo84's picture

Hi Andrew.
A feedback is always important for team performance and growth. you should definitely go ahead with a feedback to him.