Canadian Pizza Magazine

8 ways to surely annoy your staff

By Rhonda R. Savage DDS   

Features Business and Operations Staffing

If you are a manager, there’s a good chance you’ve had many pet peeves regarding your staff and their behaviour. What you may not realize is that your employees probably have a few complaints themselves.

If you are a manager, there’s a good chance you’ve had many pet peeves
regarding your staff and their behaviour. What you may not realize is
that your employees probably have a few complaints themselves.

It’s true that often these complaints can be unreasonable. As a manger
you need to accept that you can’t always make everyone happy, but it’s
important to know what you can improve on as a leader. When your staff
members respect you and the way you manage the team, it improves
morale. When morale goes up, production goes up.

How can you improve your management style to prevent your employees from agreeing with these frustrations?


You come to work grumpy

Each day depends on your attitude when you walk in the door. If you are
negative from the first moment your staff members see you, it may
affect their moods and result in low productivity or bad customer
service. Make a mental choice the moment you wake up in the morning to
be a positive influence on your staff members.

If you have start-of-shift team meetings, assign someone to bring in
inspirational thought or a humorous incident or joke to start off on a
positive note. Do not complain about the day before or dwell on the
traffic you dealt with during your commute.

You micromanage the staff

Excessive attention to detail can hold back the growth and development
of your business and your team members. Employees that are micromanaged
feel frustrated, lose confidence, become timid and are discouraged.
Attention to detail is a positive trait of any manager, but if you’re
correcting every little detail or do everything yourself, you’ll hurt
your performance and that of the team.

As an owner or a manager, you need to delegate, follow up without
micromanaging and hold people accountable. Create a system in which
your employees can keep you updated on the projects they’ve been
assigned. This way, they don’t feel you are micromanaging or taking
over, but you are able to keep updated on the progress.

You are too “hands off” and don’t hold employees accountable

While micromanaging may not be a sound management strategy, it’s also
possible to be too “hands off” with your staff members. Good leaders
coach and mentor but don’t micromanage or let things float along. You
know the strengths and weaknesses of your people.

The days of dictatorial leadership are gone. Most employees today
thrive on independence, growth and involvement. And yet they also
thrive on feedback, accountability and firm, fair leadership. Finding a
balance is crucial for the success of your business.

You complain about the bad economy and poor cash flow

It may be a difficult time in the economy. Your employees care about
you and the company, but if you’re burdening them with your woes, the
morale will go down. Don’t share everything. They don’t need to know it
all. Focus on being positive, cheerful and supportive.

Some people may argue that your staff needs to know the facts. Yes, but
do not harangue them daily that their job is in jeopardy. Let them know
what the goals are and how important each and every one of them is to
the success of the business. Before you feel a need to lay anyone off,
ask yourself these questions:

  1. Can you be training and encouraging them to be more in your market?
  2. How is your customer service?
  3. Should you be working on your business before you resort to drastic measures?

You bring your personal life to work
We all have those days. We all have personal lives outside of our work.
It can sometimes be difficult to separate the two, especially as a
manager. But regardless of what is happening in your personal life,
it’s important to keep that separate from your professional life.

Anything from talking to your employees about personal problems to
having family and friends stop by the office excessively can hugely
affect the way your employees view you as a leader. If you overheard
your employee talking about her date last night rather than focusing on
work, you probably wouldn’t be thrilled. It’s important to set a good
example for the staff by setting the standard of behaviour.

You don’t deal with problematic employees

If you don’t deal with problematic staff, one (or both) of two things
will happen: The others will begin acting like them or you’ll lose the
respect of the staff.

You cannot ignore a problem. The problem will build and you will lose
the respect of the rest of your staff if you don’t take necessary steps
to resolve the issue. Deal with issues early on before they get out of

Staying involved in the day-to-day tasks of your staff members will
help you stay on top of any problems or potential problems that may
exist. Make sure you are visible to employees by walking around the
restaurant and visiting a little with each one. Check in with key
people to find out if there are any issues you need to resolve.

You are not around enough

There is no doubt that emergencies come up. Sometimes no matter how
hard you try, you have to be out of work for personal reasons, whether
it is a doctor appointment or family emergency.

It’s important that employees are able to count on you for assistance,
guidance and support. A manager who is not available for their staff
will quickly lose the respect of these people. If you do need to be
away from the business a lot for personal reasons, try to schedule
meetings on the same day each week. This way, at least your staff will
always know when they can reach you.

You overreact

You can be a good leader 90 per cent of the time, but if you’re losing
it 10 per cent, that’s what they’ll remember. Overreacting in any way
to an employee bringing an issue to your attention is a bad idea. It’s
important for the staff to know they can come to you with problems and
keep you updated on the business. You don’t want to make them feel
guilty for doing this; rather you want to encourage this behaviour.
Your team knows things about the business that you may not be aware of
sometimes. You need to know what they know, or your business may be in
danger. Overreacting to anything your staff members tell you will only
discourage them from keeping you informed.

Everyone, even management needs to work at being a better team member.
Begin by realizing the strengths and weaknesses that you have as a
leader and work on the things you could improve on. By being aware of
the frustrations your staff members have, you can work to change those
habits. You’ll earn the respect of your employees, they’ll be happier
and more productive and the business will benefit.

Dr. Rhonda Savage is an internationally acclaimed speaker and CEO for a
well-known practice management and consulting business. Dr. Savage is a
noted motivational speaker on leadership, women’s issues and
communication. For more information on her speaking, visit or e-mail

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