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What to do when older workers start to coast

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in HR Management,Human Resources

When employees approach retirement, they sometimes go on autopilot. They may think there’s no way their employer will fire them at their age, assuming management will fear an age discrimination lawsuit. Such sudden drops in productivity can frustrate everyone involved, including co-workers and supervisors.

Here’s how to handle employees who are nearing retirement but who have already “mentally retired:”

Continue to set clear and objective performance goals. Explain what the employee needs to do to meet those goals. Continue to conduct performance appraisals.

Treat those employees as if they have years remaining on the payroll. For example, don’t exclude them from promotional opportunities just because they announced they’ll retire in the next few years. You can consider such announcements, but don’t make them the sole reasons for rejecting the applications.

Document deficiencies, just as you do for other employees. If an employee who is nearing retirement suddenly earns a markedly lower performance appraisal, make sure you can document the change with solid, objective examples of poor or declining performance.

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