Team Addition and Subtraction

Proper hiring creates a good team; and a good team lowers turnover. Team members leave or are let go because they should not have been hired in the first place. Take time to fill positions. Turnover is expensive in lost productivity and morale within the team.

When posting jobs, give enough information for candidates to rule you out before wasting your time. Word your posting in such a way to attract the personality and character you want. Never sell the job, always have the opportunity that is available; people desire work that matters.

If the person is all about money and benefits, they won’t last long on your team, you will never satisfy them. Listen more than speak. Never hire with only one interview. Working for a Christian company is not a code for lazy.

Twelve Steps to Hiring:

  1. Pray – God must send the right people.
  2. Key Results Area – describe what winning looks like in your company.
  3. Resume – they’re useless, unless you use them to start a conversation.
  4. Personality test – DISC is a good tool.
  5. Do you like them? Lot of talent is not good enough.
  6. Do they light up when they talk about the position?
  7. Compensation calculation, policy, benefits review.
  8. Personal budget – so they know they can live on the salary you are offering?
  9. References – they are useless, unless you do the phone interview.
  10. Spouse interview – this will change your life.
  11. Mission statement (company and personal) – Dave’s company doesn’t sell books, they sell hope.
  12. 90-day probation for the company and the person.

When team members fail:

Team members have to perform in the company or they have to leave.

Determine the root of the performance failure:

  1. If the problem is your leadership, fix it.
  2. Did you hire someone who didn’t fit the position?
  3. Were they given the tools to win?
  4. Were you there to mentor them?
  5. Were the objectives clear?
  6. Were conflicts unresolved?

When the problem is personal: quantify (child with the flu is different from child with cancer).

  1. Can you tolerate the poor performance until the problem passes?
  2. Do you need to bring in a professional to help?
  3. Does the personal problem put the company in jeopardy?
  4. Does the team need extra support while the recovery occurs?
  5. There must be incremental progress or they need to go.
  6. Make errors on the side of giving too much grace.

When the problem is incompetence:

  1. Use the Golden Rule, treat them gently.
  2. Incompetence is not evil; we are all incompetent at something.
  3. Can incompetence be solved with mentoring or education?
  4. Is the incompetence a character issue?
  5. Is there an integrity issue?
  6. Is the character issue laziness?

Steps toward resolution:

  1. Is a reprimand in order? This is a frank discussion of the performance shortfall and your analysis of the lack of performance.
  2. A good reprimand is short, uncomfortable for everyone, the problem is attacked (not the person), done in private, and is gentle.
  3. One Minute Manager: sandwich method (praise, hit, praise).
  4. Attack the problem but reaffirm the person.
  5. Deal with conflict or it will build.


  1. They will be asked to leave immediately when there is a moral or integrity failure.
  2. Deal with them carefully, prayerfully, over time and never in anger.
  3. The issue causing you concern should be the subject of frequent reprimands.
  4. Reprimands should become increasingly formal with clearly defined changes required.
  5. The last reprimand must be in writing with deadlines of performance.
  6. It must never be a surprise as to why someone was fired.
  7. Some people will become aware that they do not fit the organization, and they leave on their own.
  8. Sanctioned incompetence demoralizes the rest of the team.
  9. You must have the courage to pull the trigger when it is time for someone to leave.
  10. Seth Godin says, “defending mediocrity is exhausting.”

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