I Found A Bad VA: Now What?
There are times when you hire a person, and it does not seem to work out. No one wants to let a team member go. This causes stress in the business and on the team. It is extremely inconvenient, not to mention the money and time lost on the hiring and training process.
The process of letting a remote team member go is much easier than letting go of a W-2 team member. With a W-2 team member, even in a right-to-work state, you have to document every situation and put them on a performance improvement plan. If not, the team member will file unemployment, or worse, file a lawsuit. Dealing with the aftermath of a bad employee is just as bad, if not worse, than dealing with them while they were a part of the team.
However, to end a relationship with a contracted virtual assistant is as easy as informing them when their last day is and paying the final paycheck. With VPM Solutions, it is as simple as closing the job and allowing the system to pay the remote team member any approved timesheets.
Having an easy time to let someone go isn't really the solution you want as a business owner, as you still have all the time and effort of hiring and training the person. Once you hire a bad person, you need to figure out the root cause, improve your hiring process, and eliminate making bad staffing decisions.
Before You Get Rid of Someone
Before you decide to fire any team member, you need to make sure they do not fit anywhere else in the business.
Ask, is this the right person but are they in the wrong seat?
Are they failing at this job because they have no direction? Are you delegating or abdicating?
Do they understand the measurables and are the measurables reasonable?
Have they had the appropriate training?
You need to be honest and really determine if this is a team member challenge, or is it a company or management challenge. Many times, you bring on the right person, but you put them in a position to fail.
How to Avoid Adding Bad Team Members Moving Forward
Get the right people on the boat
Do you have core values and a defined culture in your company? If not, you still have core values and culture . . . it just may not be the one you want. Culture starts from the top and is pushed down. As a leader of your company, one of your primary jobs is to create and enforce the culture you want.
By having a defined culture, you can add team members (and fire) based on your culture. The first obstacle to getting the right people is to make sure they fit in your culture.
Put them in the right seats
Now that you found the right culture fit, you now have to find the right seat. Having the right person in the wrong seat is not a recipe for success. To get the person in the right seat, you need to understand the personality type of the job role you are trying to fill and make sure it matches with the personality type of the team member. There are many different personality profile tests out there, and they are all good.
An example would be, I find the right person culturally, they embody my core values. However, I am hiring for an accounting position, this position requires attention to detail and is process-focused. The person that I am looking to bring on is outgoing, people-focused, and has no attention to detail. He may be the right person as far as company values, but he is the wrong person for the seat you are trying to fill.
Give them measurables
You must have a detailed job description so that you know exactly what you want the outcome of the job role to be. The vaguer you are in the job description, the higher the chance of failure. You also have to give the job role measurables, also known as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).
Each job role should have 1 - 3 KPIs so that the person doing the job can be measured. How do you or they know if they are doing a good job if they are not measured?
In his book The One Minute Manager, Ken Blanchard discusses the importance of spending a lot of time with a new team member. It is important to spend a lot of time with new virtual assistants and train them. One successful way is to train them over ZOOM an hour each day at the beginning of the day and have them re-watch the training video and create the training manual. Depending upon the complexity of the job role, this training can take one week or three months. Do not rush the training. The team member will learn more if they build the training manual instead of you.