People Management

With some employees, it isn’t a matter of ability, it’s a matter of attitude. And while you can’t control someone’s horrible personality, you can decide how you’re going to respond. Use these scripts and strategies to confront problem employees and effectively manage employee discipline so you can bring motivating back to the forefront of your workday.

The first rule of people management is not to let one bad apple spoil your whole bunch. Difficult people can put a strain on the productive members of your team.

Make the most of your human capital. Browse our articles on the good, the bad and the ugly of People Management…

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We have to lay off several employees. Some have only been with us a couple of years, but one has worked here for 13 years. We want to treat them right by providing severance pay, but I don't know how much is appropriate. Those of you who have been in this situation, how much severance did you offer?—Jason, Ga.

Layoffs, pay cuts and an uncertain economy have left many organizations with fewer employees to do the work—often for the same or less money. Not all of those employees are handling it well. Here are a dozen ways you can deal with economy-induced employee stress and help your employees focus on their work:

Here are four ways managers can make sure they really hear what their employees are saying. The payoff: fewer costly mistakes, less wasted time and better quality and service. Feel free to pass this article along to your supervisors.

Motivating employees is hard enough when everyone has their own cushy office. But it’s even tougher when people are jammed together like sardines in a claustrophobic environment. Nerves can fray and tempers can flare.
Eric, a manager at a financial services company in Florida with 19 employees, updates us on his efforts to allow employees to work from home.
You may think that stating a bold goal and mobilizing your employees to achieve it is a test of your leadership. But you cannot will your staff to do the impossible.
You’re a technical whiz. But one of the reasons you’ve climbed into the managerial ranks is not your advanced know-how—it’s your ability to lead people.

Move over, Google. Microsoft grabs tech headlines this month by adding zippy new features to its Internet Explorer browser. Here are four cool tricks that will save time for you and your employees.

We have an office cubicle workplace. Some of our employees like to listen to music during the day. Naturally, not everyone likes everyone else’s taste in music. I don’t want to referee these silly fights. I want a policy that says “If you are listening to music, use headphones.” Does anyone have a policy I can copy?—Laura, Boston
Like everyone else, we’ve been battered by the recession. We’ve started to turn things around, but our employees are pretty beat up by a tough business environment and a couple of layoffs we’ve had to do. Morale is poor. The general feeling is that we’re paddling like mad just to stay in the same place. Any ideas for inexpensive but meaningful ways to show staff that we appreciate their hard work and sacrifice during hard times?—Steve T., North Carolina
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