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Who is responsible for managing underperformance?

Frequenty Asked Questions

Who is responsible for managing underperformance?

Under-performance should be addressed by an employee’s direct line manager. Although a challenging and often uncomfortable process for both parties, under-performance needs to be addressed promptly and cannot be left until the formal performance appraisal process.

Possible negative effects of failing to address performance quickly include:

  • Underperforming employees mistakenly believing their performance is satisfactory without feedback to the contrary;
  • Underperformance may continue to decline which can infect the behaviour of others in the workplace; and
  • Employees who are performing comparatively well finding the lack of management action as demotivating; leading to a lack of moral, respect for their manager and disengagement.

In order to handle situations of under-performance, line managers need clear procedures to follow, support from their organisation and training in how to manage these sorts of situations.

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