By Lorina, Aussie Childcare Network 6 December, 2017
When an Educator is not performing their tasks or responsibilities at best practice, these issues need to be addressed for the Educator to understand where they need to improve.
The following article is a guide for Lead Educators/Directors and those in charge of Educators within a setting, to understand underperformance, common performance issues, how to solve them and more.
Underperformance needs to dealt with efficiently by the Lead Educator/Director as it can cause a negative effect on the entire service and become unhealthy and difficult to resolve in the future.
What is Underperformance?
Educators may perform poorly due to the following reasons:
During the time of their underperformance, there may be personal issues or hardships that the Educator may be facing outside of the service that is affecting their work or workplace bullying that has been overlooked. Educators should be given an opportunity to discuss in confidentiality the reasons for their poor performance in a safe environment. It's impotant that Lead Educators/ Directors manage underperformance in an appropriate and sensitive manner in order for a positive outcome and to move forward to create a high-quality environment.
Common Performance Issues
Here is a summary of issues that you may face by Educators and how to manage and improve performance:
The Educator does not undertake work as required, showing signs of apathy and laziness.
The Educator does not appear to understand job requirements or directions.
The Educator will not follow directions or perform tasks as required.
The Educator fails to acknowledge they are underperforming.
The Educator does not complete work tasks to the required standards, policies and procedures.
Lacks the required skills and capabilities.
What to do:
The Educator is cynical about work environment and tasks, bringing negative opinions to the work environment.
The Educator is regularly absent without cause.
Step 1 - Identify The Problem
Specifically, identify the problem - give clear examples.
Step 2 - Assess and analyse the problem
Identify the issue and determine how serious the issue is, how long the issue has existed etc.
Step 3 - Arrange A Meeting Discuss The Issue With the Educator Involved
Have an open and non-intimidating conversation on:
Step 4 - Come Up With A Solution
The Educator and Lead Educator/Director should collaborate and come up with a solution to overcome these issues. Educators who are encouraged to contribute to the solution are more likely to accept it and act upon it.
To come up with a solution together you should:
Once the issues have been resolved and a plan of action has been devised, it's important that the Lead Educator/Director monitor the Educator's performance and provide feedback and encouragement where necessary. Both positive and negative feedback should be given and you should continue to work with the Educator to ensure that their performance improves and the Educator carries our their duties as required.
When an Educator is underperforming it's important that they are given a chance to improve before further action is taken. It is the responsibility of the Lead Educator/Director to ensure that Educators understand what is expected of them and when issues do arise that you explain your concerns with examples. Educators should be given an opportunity to respond to issues of concern before you consider action and work together to resolve all concerns. All Educators within the service should regularly be provided with feedback on their performance so improvements can be made accordingly within the team environment.