Ep #33: How to Solve Any Performance Problem

 In Podcast

When you have someone on the team who isn’t performing, there’s a gap between the outcome you expect and the results you’re getting. Here’s the formula for fixing any performance problem.

What you’ll find in this episode:

  1. The first reason that performance problems occur is that the expectation was not clear.
  2. The second reason for performance problems is that you’re not holding them accountable to your crystal-clear expectations.
  3. Let’s not run our businesses by hoping people will just miraculously change. It doesn’t help you get exceptional results.
  4. I know that you plan to give exceptional results to your clients, which is why you went into business in the first place. Hold that same level of expectation for others.

Featured on the Show and Other Notes:

  • Brooke Castillo and I have put together a curriculum and a video course called Entrepreneurial Management. It’s 26 modules.
  • The Founder’s Lab launches October 31st and is my private coaching program for female founders who are generating more than 7-figures in their revenue. It’s a complement to the Entrepreneurial Management program and is a part of the work you get as a client of mine.  Go here to book an appointment with me.
  • There is also the Founder’s Lab Fundamentals – for women who have just gotten started hiring people –making about $200-300K in their business. Schedule an appointment with me and let’s talk.
  • Please write a review of my podcast. Go to iTunes’ main page and give it a 5 star if you feel it is worthy and write a review. Do a screen shot and go to Instagram and put that on your story or feed and tag me @KrisPlachyCoach. I will then send you a list of all of my most favorite books that I’ve read over the years.
  • Reach out to me by emailing me at support@leadershipcoachllc.com.
  • If you haven’t joined my email subscribers list, you can do that here.


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Podcast Transcript

Hey everyone. I’m Kris Plachy, and this is How to Lead For Female Entrepreneurs and Founders, because the best way to grow a business is to grow the person who’s running it. Let’s go ahead and get started.

Hello. Hello. Hello, gorgeous. How are you? Welcome to the podcast today. I have to tell you, I’m like beside myself with excitement. There’s so much cool stuff happening right now in the world of Kris Plachy coaching and how to lead, and I just… I’m having so much fun. I’m just enjoying myself so much. So this is the first podcast I’ve recorded since I got back from Hawaii, which was amazing. So beautiful. Such a powerful time. I actually sat down over the weekend and made a little movie for my retreaters of our time together, which I will likely share on some social media platform somewhere.

I have to say it’s always just such a powerful experience and sitting together, asking questions, allowing your brain to reflect, and just watching my clients sort of create this space that, gosh, we all crave, right? We all crave time to just think and be and relax. And yet, I don’t know if you do this, even on those days when I need that and I want that, I get so consumed with all the other things I have to do that this is a discipline that I am ongoing, and one of the things actually I did at the retreat, because I go through the process myself as I have my clients go through it, is I created sort of my own daily ritual because I’ve never really had one. That’s always been something I’ve been envious of other people, I’ve been watching other people that I work with and like, oh, I want a ritual. I want something I do.

So I have something that I call the 10, 30, 10, and it’s 10 minutes of journaling time, 30 minutes of moving my body, and 10 minutes of planning for every day. And I’ve been doing it since I got back from Hawaii. It’s honestly been really, really powerful. It’s been super insightful. I mean I’ve gotten a ton out of doing this much introspection every day, just 10 minutes. It’s amazing. All these ideas that I have, all this insight that I have, really helping to manage my mind. Of course, I’ve always done thought models, which I’ve taught for years and has been an anchor of my work. But the process of the questions that I’m asking myself and just really getting into, it’s just been really, really valuable.

So moving my body’s been a little bit harder because I hurt my knee in Hawaii. So instead I’m also really paying attention to what I plan and eat for the day, which has been great also. So if you don’t have a ritual for yourself, you may not call it that, but I really do think there’s an incredible power to that. And I am, like many of you, I have three kids, I have a very busy household. I’ve used the excuse for years I don’t have time in the morning. I don’t have time to do… Which of course is just silly. It’s just making the time. And so that’s what I’ve been doing.

And in other news, there’s just so much going on here as it relates to supporting our clients. There are so many of you, which of course as I have started working very exclusively with female entrepreneurs over the past now almost a year, which is crazy, right? I’ve been coaching for 20 years and now I’ve just really focused on you guys, which has been so exceptional. I’ve just fallen in love with so many people. But my practice is really expanding and I’ve now brought a coach into my world that’s helping me with my clients who generate less than a million dollars.

So we’ve put together an incredible coaching program for my clients who are running businesses, who have successful business models, who are hiring, but you just haven’t crossed into that seven figure mark and you still need help and you still need the tools. And we’re coupling that right now with also the launch of the co-creative course I made with Brooke Castillo called The Entrepreneurial Management Program, which is so good. You guys, it’s just so good. It’s so fabulous. And it’s kind of like a secret that it’s actually available now at entrepreneurialmanagement.com, so shh, don’t tell anyone because it hasn’t officially released, but I want to make sure you know that if you work with me in the Founders Lab, which is my private coaching program for female founders who were generating more than seven figures in their revenue, the entrepreneurial management program is a part of the work that you get as a client of mine.

So if you know you’re going to work with me, I want you to know that’s coming to you. And I am launching my next entrepreneurial management Founders Lab group here coming up very soon. And again, I want you to know these are small groups, really, really powerful groups of women. We do amazing work together. So gosh, there’s just so many fun things happening. So more to come. Stay tuned and check in with me as I go through all of these fun things that we’re doing here on the podcast as well.

So today I want to talk to you about just solving any problem. I do find that that’s probably the majority of what I do with my clients is help you solve problems, right? You’ve got this issue with your team, you’ve got this issue with your clients, you’ve got this issue in your business, and you’re not sure what to do to help yourself solve the problem. And the one problem that I know tends to be the most consistent is problems with people’s performance, like not getting the results that you want from people who work for you, right? And so I want to give you a formula today that’s very simple. This is not rocket science. It’s hard to remember because you’re not going to like how simple it is. You’re going to want your problem to be much more complex, because if it’s complex, then it’s justified why it hasn’t been solved yet or why it’s too hard to solve, or maybe you don’t like the two options I’m going to give you for solving these problems, which of course requires some attention from you, which I know is not your favorite either.

But when you have somebody on the team who’s not performing, it’s very easy to understand and know why that’s an issue. So there’s the first reason, right. We always have a gap. If somebody is not achieving a goal, we have a gap, and just in the past couple of weeks I could tell you that we have… I have clients who have people who work for them who aren’t generating enough revenue. I have clients who have people who work for them who are making a lot of mistakes. I have clients who have people who work for them who are getting to work not on time, don’t have good responsiveness, are not assisting in the growth of the company, are not generating kind of referrals that need to be generated. I have clients who have employees who are not thinking through and solving problems the way that we would want them to.

So we have all the things, right. This is not problem specific what I’m going to share with you. You have an outcome that you expect and you aren’t getting it, we have a gap. That’s what we have. We have a gap. And there’s one of two reasons why you have that gap. The first reason you might have that gap is because the expectation was not clear. This is on you, right. I know that you don’t like this. I really do. Like I appreciate that in your brain you are clear, but the first place we always want to go, if we don’t get a result that we expected is have we been clear about the expectation? And the only way you’re going to do that is to go back and dissect what did I ask them to do? Was I clear?

I know I’ve used this example for days and I don’t know if I’ve used it recently, but you know, for years I used to struggle with my children to ask them to clean up their room. Have you guys had this issue? Right? You ask your kids clean up your room. So I remember very specifically one time telling my son clean up your room. And he said, “Okay.” And I went in and he’s like, “Look, it’s clean.” And of course there was nothing on the floor. But then when I opened the closet and I looked under the bed, it was mayhem, right. Everything had just gotten shoved in different corners. So of course in my brain, clean up your room meant put your dirty clothes in the laundry, fold the clothes that are hanging out, pick up all the garbage, all the things. But in his mind, he just meant, oh no, no, no, no. Just make it look good, and if you have to shove it all in a corner, that’s fine. So that’s on me. That was an unclear expectation. That wasn’t a clear expectation.

So you first have to do that with yourself, right? So if you’re not… If you have an employee who’s making a lot of mistakes, have you been clear about what your expectation is? If you have an employee who is not achieving results, have you been clear about what the result is and how they need to go about doing it? Have you been clear about what your expectations are in terms of response time? Have you been clear about what your expectations are about people coming to work?

I have a lot of people who say, “My employee just keeps being sick or calling in sick or leaving early or whatever, and they don’t even have any PTO time left and they keep calling in sick.” And I’m like, “But do you have an expectation set down somewhere for that?” If you exceed your PTO time, do you get to take any more, do you get to work here? But of course we don’t like that part, and I understand that. This is all the other things that I talk about.

Having a firm boundary and guidelines around why you do and don’t have employees in your business is such an essential part of operating a successful business. But because so many of you have hired friends and family, which I know is what you do, or you’ve had people work for you forever, it gets hard to really do that. And expectations get very blurry because you all know each other and you feel like they can read your mind.

The second potential for a gap is that your expectation has been crystal clear, but you’re not holding them accountable to it. So you’ve told them exactly what needs to be done to achieve a result, but they’re not doing it, and there’s no accountability. You’ve told them exactly what will happen if they continue to make mistakes, but you’re not holding accountable to what will happen if they make mistakes. You’ve told them exactly what will happen if they call in sick again. You’ve told them exactly what will happen if they’re late to work again. You’ve told them exactly what will happen and how to solve problems in your company, and they still don’t do it. There’s no accountability.

Accountability is accounting for your employee’s ability. It doesn’t mean you’re a jerk. We’ve got accountability all wrong in our heads because we’ve all had such crappy experiences with it, right? We’ve had terrible… All of us have had terrible experiences with someone who told us we didn’t do something right and so then we have all this angst around giving that kind of feedback and holding people accountable, and really what we’re doing is just holding ourselves accountable to having a conversation and addressing it. That’s what accountability is, right? But in the absence of that, they don’t know, or they think you didn’t mean it. So why would they keep… why would they stop if I know she said she was going to fire me if I kept being sick or she told me I wasn’t going to be able to work here anymore, or she told me I wasn’t going to get paid or she told me I wasn’t going to get the shift I want if I kept calling in sick or if I kept not coming to work on time or what have you, but she hasn’t. So maybe she didn’t mean it.

So why would they change? You know who we are. We’re humans. Path of least resistance. So I just want you to really look at those two pieces of any gap. Have I been clear with my expectations? And this sometimes is something you have to rub up against somebody else, because you might think you were crystal clear and sometimes you just have to do it with the employee directly. Hey, can you remind me what your understanding was of the commitment here? Your interpretation of the assignment? What was your understanding of what I meant when we talked about being late again, and see what they say. Because you might have to reclarify that expectation and be crystal clear. And I appreciate that there are times in your brain you’re thinking, “Are you serious, Plachy? People don’t know that?”

And this actually just recently happened to me where I thought I was clear, but I wasn’t because I thought working full time meant business hours for a virtual person. It didn’t. To this person, it meant when she felt like it, which I know sounds very potentially not what other people might think, but the truth is it’s not what her expectation was. And I took responsibility for that. I had to clarify that. What are the specific hours I expect you to work? I have to get really clear. Because staying on the other side of it and saying, “Well they should know better,” which is what I know comes out of some of your mouths, it’s not helpful. It just doesn’t help you get the work done and it doesn’t help you hire the exceptional employee.

So let’s do that instead. Let’s just say, “Okay, I’m not getting what I was hoping to get here, so I’ve got to backup and I need to think. Okay, do I need to look at the expectation and how I set that and was I clear, or do I need to now implement a process for accountability? Is that where I’m dropping the ball?” Now I think a lot of the time that’s it. You’re just hoping that they will change and so you don’t want to actually have to address that they are still making mistakes and that they’re still not thinking the way that you want them to think and they’re still not getting the result that you want because you don’t want to have to hold them accountable. Ew, ew, ew.

So let’s not run our business by hoping people will just miraculously change. It doesn’t help you get exceptional results. And I always come back to, I know y’all have heard me say this 400 times, I always come back to why do you have employees in your business? And we all hire people to deliver results, exceptional results, I would think. Because I know that you plan to give exceptional results to your clients, which is why you went into business in the first place. So hold that same level of expectation for others, but you’ve got to be clear about what it means and then you have to hold them accountable on the other end. All right? Okay.

Hey, if you love this podcast, you have to really check out the Founders Lab. I would really love to talk with you more about working with me with other women in the Founders Lab. And now that I’ve expanded my team, we have what we’re calling the Founders Lab Fundamentals, which is for women who have just gotten started hiring people, maybe making about 200K in your business, 300K. You’re just kind of getting started going or you’ve been in business maybe three or four years and things are starting to pick up. I want you to know we have a solution for you. I’m so excited to be able to present both resources to you, because we want to help all the women who are female entrepreneurs who are willing to learn how to lead. So if that’s you, go to my website, schedule an appointment, krisplachy.com/appointment. I meet with every new client and I’d love to talk with you. Have a wonderful day.

Hey, don’t miss a thing. Make sure you join my community at krisplachy.com/connect. Once you join, you’ll get all the information on exclusive and private experiences that I’m offering to my clients. I can’t wait to see you there.

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