{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "How do you guys deal with staff who turn in incomplete projects right at the timeline you set with them? And they then use nonsensical questions as an “excuse” for why they don’t finish their work. Also: I make absolutely sure I make myself as available as possible for check ins/zoom calls if they are stuck", "post_id": "60fe762d50ed000020aade7a", "reply_count": 9, "vote_count": 7, "bowl_id": "564a5cdb94887803001dd07c", "bowl_name": "Accounting" }

How do you guys deal with staff who turn in incomplete projects right at the timeline you set with them? And they then use nonsensical questions as an “excuse” for why they don’t finish their work. Also: I make absolutely sure I make myself as available as possible for check ins/zoom calls if they are stuck

likehelpful
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If it’s one time ok, if it’s multiple. Open it right away, see if everything is complete. Whatever is missing email them for it. Ask them to prioritize this. Also lie about the deadline, give yourself 1 or 2 extra days. If it still continues, start setting up a 15 min meeting 1 day before it’s due for any questions. If nothing works, tell ur boss and then take them off the account.

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Check to see if they have other things on their plate that they feel pressured to do also - sometimes there is a game being played by others giving assignments behind closed doors and making the person feel bad or otherwise engaging in character assassination for not getting their things done. Other times, you may not have been entirely clear about what "done" means. I've seen situations where it is both. It happens. Take screenshots, save down files and send to them showing evidence of what was not done so they cannot deny it. Ask them just to be totally honest with you about why xyz is not done. Then, you need to be smart. Rather than report them, which will not be a good motivator when they find out, proceed with compassion. Try to remember a time when you or someone you know made the same mistake. Put yourself in their shoes. Ask them if they need you or someone else to explain more/better (recognize if you are not great at explaining) or if they just need time. If the thing needs to get done timely, do it for them and leave them with lessons learned for next time. The key is that the person must have always felt that if they make a mistake it is ok. Environments where you do not have this results in things going awry, even if everyone is trying their best, because a watched pot never boils. Most people I've met, if you do this compassionate approach and in reality they were "trying to pull one over you", they will never try it again. If they were doing their best and not playing you, they will try to figure out how to do even better. It may also take time to learn how to even do better and know what questions to ask to improve the work product - this is important to recognize. Instead of doing anything wild, they will want to redeem themselves, and they will try their absolute best. It may not be everything you have in mind, but it will be a series of sacrifices on their part that they will not soon forget. After whatever the first fiasco is, if you find a way to give them a second chance to redeem themselves, do it, and in a way where they believe they have enough time. If they do not confirm the time, ask why and that they confirm the time they think it will take as soon as they know. If you get done dirty, they will know that you have evidence to report them and you should remind them so without directly telling them by reminding them of performance expectations. But if not, you will most likely be surprised at how better the outcome is.

likehelpful

Their deadline should never be your deadline. You have to give yourself time for review and rework as needed. Staff need training and coaching, not just expectations of perfect work. I understand your frustration, but I have watched seniors and managers invest little time and effort into training staff, and then get pissed when their expectations aren’t met. Making yourself available for questions is pointless if the staff don’t know what questions to ask. Also, remember what it’s like to be a staff, worried about asking a question that someone thinks they should know how to answer.

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This is why I said I said I make sure to make myself available as much as possible for the staff. I invest as much as possible with these staff because i view them as team members not just bodies. I make it a goal to not be a senior that’s AWOL when help is needed, but I’m getting tired of staff that take advantage of me.

Staff/seniors take note. This is why managers set pretend deadlines.

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Did your staff start remotely or mostly remotely? And what practice are you in? I ask because I think many of our 2nd years (in a&a so they all got promoted) are struggling/drowning

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Shred their work with comments and send it back and tell them you need it by tomorrow.

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Their deadline allows time for me to review. I treat them like any staff who turn in incomplete work, deadline or not. I have a feedback session with them. If their excuses are nonsensical, I internally label then dumb/incompetent. For the nicer people out there, yes there are stupid questions. And yes, there are incompetent/stupid people who are simply hopeless and needs to rethink their career. When I say nonsensical, I mean having a position with no logical reasoning when previously given all information needed and instructions that are nearly impossible to misinterpret.

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