Taking a cue from Keith J. Cunningham from his new book, The Road Less Stupid – Advice from the Chairman of the Board (a great read, BTW). If I gave you a ‘do over’ on 3 of the biggest people management mistakes you’ve ever made, I bet you’ll say, “I wish I never hired _______” for at least one of them.

In my case I wish I never hired, we’ll call him Jim. He was a super nice guy, fit our culture perfectly, was super enthusiastic and passionate about our vision, was fun to work with and always produced great work. He was perfect in every way except for one. He didn’t have all the skills to do the main thing that we hired him for. And because he was such a nice guy and great in so many other ways, we kept him. That stupid decision cost me a lot of money and had far more reaching consequences than I ever imagined.

Perhaps you’ve made a similar mistake or maybe it’s a bit different but if I asked you why you wish you never hired __________, you’d respond with something like this:

“I was so excited by what she could bring to the company, I was expecting so much more”

“He seemed perfect, I thought he was the answer to our biggest problem but”

“I couldn’t believe that I had to explain the same thing over and over again, it was soooo frustrating. And the issues I had to clean up were exhausting.”

“They cost me money, time, and my sanity.”

These are all performance issues that could have been avoided.  Let’s take a look at how this happens for many Business Owners and Leaders.

You’re company is growing and you need to hire

After many months of searching and going through the hiring process you’ve found the perfect one. In the meantime the work has piled up so you and your existing team have had to work extra hours just to keep up. Which has left you with very little time to think about what she would need to do to help. Let alone the training he would need so you can set them up for success.

Your new enthusiastic, eager to please employee arrives on their first day and because you’re so busy you hand them to another employee to “train”. Sometimes, the “trainer” is prepared with a training system but more often than not, they’re not, so training is haphazard at best. Or worse, they have nothing prepared so they ask the new employee to read the dreaded “procedure manual” which may or may not be up-to-date or have anything at all to do with their new job.

You know you need to meet with your new employee and have a chat about her new job but because of everything on your plate it takes a week or two before you finally do. By that time that new job luster has worn off.  That excited, enthusiastic and eager to please new employee feels dejected and maybe even resentful and his performance starts to show it.

And that’s the last thing you wanted. You were so excited when you decided to hire them because you saw exactly how they could solve so many of your problems. Now the excitement is gone and there’s only disappointment on both sides.

If you’re well down this slippery road or you see the signs that you’re starting to slide in this direction, then…


You can re-ignite that excitement, enthusiasm and eagerness to please.  And you can do it for your whole team — not only your new employee.

Here’s a simple tip you can easily implement that will Up Your Team’s Performance no matter what the level of enthusiasm. And it all starts with a conversation with your employees.

Here’s what you need to do to make your conversation successful:

1. Meet With the Whole Team: Tell them that you’d like their input on becoming a high performing company and tell them that you’ll be meeting with each of them over the next few weeks to get that input. Ask them to think of 3 things that they could do differently to increase their performance.

2. Get Prepared for Success: By thinking about and writing down your answers to the following:

  • What are 3 things this employee does well
  • What are 3 things this employee could do better?
  • What would this employee accomplish in 3 and 6 months that would make you really happy?
  • What help or training would this employee need to reach those 3 and 6 month goals?

Now set up that conversation with your employees and come with an attitude of collaboration and see what happens.

Want more tips to increase your team’s performance and grow faster, then download the free cheat sheet here

About Your Writer:

Hi, I’m Angela Heit and I’m a self-professed serial entrepreneur. I’m currently running my third business and just launched my fourth. I was fortunate to have built my second venture into a multi-seven figure business in 4 short years before I sold it. So, I understand what it takes to grow a successful business.

For more than 25 years I’ve helped 100s of small business and fortune 500 clients build better teams. Based on that experience, I’ve created this series of courses that show you how to avoid their mistakes and repeat their successes.

Both their experiences and my own have taught me that improving your leadership skills will both increase the trajectory of your business growth and the amount of happiness you feel while going through the process.

I’m looking forward to showing you how. To your success, Angela