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Set a ‘one-minute excuse’ rule

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in Leaders & Managers

When employees show up late or renege on a promise, they may want to recite their excuses. Listen for too long and you’ll waste more time and money. Better: Say, “You have one minute to explain.” Cut them off if they’re still talking after 60 seconds. Don’t critique the excuse; instead, clarify your expectations, invite questions and express your faith in their ability to improve.

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