(Time to read this Blog is about 2 minutes)

Before we get to the main topic, here are a few things to get you thinking…or smiling:

  1. My biz quote of the week:
    “A family business is simply a partnership where blood boils at   room temperature.” 
    To access my Biz Tool #A-11 re the 5 key factors required to make a partnership or family business successful, Click Here.  …Donald Cooper  
  1. How is your industry changing? Every industry is being disrupted.by new technologies, new competitors, changing business models, changing customer preferences and changing societal values…or a combination of several of these factors.
    How people shop is a great example. Back in 2007, the stock of iconic American department store chain, JC Penney, traded at $85 per share, while shares of Amazon traded at $40.  Today, JC Penney shares are at just 34¢ and Amazon trades at a spectacular $3,402 per share.
  1. Cooper goes Virtual! Donald’s bottom-line business insights now available via Zoom!   We’re receiving many requests for my high-value Virtual Programs, especially the Programs that include follow-up 1-on-1 telephone Biz Coaching. To access our       2-page Info Sheet on this extraordinary possibility, Click Here.  


Now, to this week’s important topic:

Are any of your staff sabotaging your business…and whose fault is it?

During a service visit to his local Acura Dealership, my friend Carl asked the Service Advisor if anything could be done to improve the fit of the gas cap lid on his new $60,000 Acura MDX.  Without even looking at the vehicle, the Service Guy replied, “No, it’s not a Mercedes you know!”

A few years ago, my brother John went to his local Canadian Tire store looking for teak oil to touch up the wood trim on his ski boat.  After leading my brother on a ‘wild goose chase’ up and down several isles, the young sales associate turned to my brother and said, “I have no idea where the teak oil is.  Why don’t you just go to Home Depot like everyone else?” 

We’ve all had experiences like this. These folks are sabotaging the business and it’s almost never their fault.  Very few employees wake up each morning and say to themselves, “I can hardly wait to get to work today so I can sabotage the company I work for!”   

Most often, the real reason for their negative behaviour is that they aren’t properly trained for the job, they weren’t the right person for the job in the first place, or some aspects of the company culture have caused them to take ‘I don’t give a damn pills’ just to survive …and none of those are their fault.

For every non-performing or ‘sabotaging’ employee in your business, ask and honestly answer these 7 key questions:

  1. Who hired them, or promoted them to their current job?
  2. What’s our ‘onboarding’ process to get each new employee off to a good start?
  3. Do we have clear and effectively communicated standards of behavior and performance …including an explanation of why we have those standards? Note: “Because I said so.” is not a reason.
  4. Who trains, coaches, supports, ‘thanks’ and encourages them on an ongoing basis?
  5. Who supervises them and listens to them…and,
  6. If they’re not performing and can’t be ‘rescued’, who allows them to stay?
  7. What aspects of our company culture might be causing employees to be less engaged, caring and committed than we’d like them to be?   

It’s so easy and comfortable to blame employees for their unproductive or inappropriate behavior.  But it will be much more useful to ask and honestly answer these 7 key but uncomfortable questions.  And then to determine what will be done, by whom, starting when, to improve your business or department in each of these key management functions.        

That’s it for this week…

Stay safe…live brilliantly…and do at least 3 important or kind things each day!       

Donald Cooper 


Donald Cooper speaks and coaches internationally on management, marketing, and business innovation.  He can be reached by email at donald@donaldcooper.com in Toronto, Canada.

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