The hiring process can take considerable time and money, which makes making a bad hire all the worse, but rest assured, though, you are not alone: Harvard Business Review estimates less than 20 percent of all hires are actually considered 'fully successful,' which leaves a lot of room for problems for managers in the hospitality industry.
Considering the high rate of turnover in our industry, that success rate is more than likely far less than the national average.
The dilemma is to cut ties and repeat the process or try to “fix” the employee and make the situation work. Unfortunately, you will cost your operation even more money if you try to fix an unfixable employee. What often prevents the “right” move, however, is hubris on the part of the manager. He or she is simply unwilling to accept and/or admit that he or she made a mistake in judgement when hiring this person.
As a manager, you must realize the overall operation is far more important than your pride being dinged. Besides, there is not a manager above you in the food chain that has not done the same thing you are about to do dozens of times.
Have the Conversation
For most managers, and employees, there is nothing more uncomfortable than “the talk.” Rather than talk around the subject, the best approach is to simply be honest and level with the employee about his or her performance. At this point, the hire may still be salvageable, so you could end up getting some good feedback regarding the employee’s challenges during this conversation, if you are honest about it.
During this conversation, you really need to encourage the employee to also be as honest as possible. Is he or she receiving the proper training? Is the job what he or she expected when they applied? Is he or she willing to work with you to find a solution to save the hire?
Fixing the Problem, If Possible
There will be times when the answer is simply better training. Perhaps the staff member entrusted with the training is just not doing a very good job at it. Maybe the employee is just not happy with that particular job, but there are other jobs in the department he or she could do. These are questions that must be asked and answered very honestly before moving forward with either the decision to salvage or terminate.
If the problem is not fixable or reassignment is simply not feasible, separation from the employee is imminent. How this is handled will largely depend upon the position. For instance, line employees are more than likely at-will employees, so they can be terminated with the approval of HR. However, managers are a different story, especially if they have contracts. The company may have to put together some type of separation package to make the firing amicable. This is something you will have to address with your HR department before moving forward.
This is a process that will no doubt play out dozens of times as you work your way through the ranks. Sadly, there is really no way to avoid this from happening. Even if you have what you think is the perfect interview process, there are people that are incredible interviewers but incapable of actually doing the job once they get through the door.
Take each and every experience as a learning one, though, to help improve your hiring process and hopefully lead to less dismissals and mistakes along the way.
Do you have hotel managers that are letting you down? Are you ready to move on to quality managers that can take your operation to the next level? Joseph David International has been successfully placing executive level managers in the hospitality industry for more than a decade because we don’t just find candidate, we find the ideal candidates for your specific property or organization. For more information about our hotel recruiter services, click here.