RCA Flag
RCA Flag
Connecting Africa’s Skilled Professionals
RCA Flag

ReConnect Africa is a unique website and online magazine for the African professional in the Diaspora. Packed with essential information about careers, business and jobs, ReConnect Africa keeps you connected to the best of Africa.

Library of Articles


ImageDear Career Coach
I work in a very high pressure company and I have been managing a project team for 9 months now. One of my team is causing me a real problem as he doesn’t seem to be putting in the same effort as he did in the first few months of the project. Although I have the authority to let him go, he is one of the nicest people you could meet and very popular with the team. Have you any suggestions on how I can get this great guy to do what's expected of him?

Bobby D.

Although it may sound obvious, my first thought is 'have you asked him?' If your colleague was working well at the start of the project, something must have caused his drop in performance. If you haven't already done so, you should take him aside or, better still, arrange a quiet room and discuss with him what he feels are the blocks to his performance.

People can underperform for many reasons; if they are bored, for instance, and feel that their work is not challenging or stimulating enough. It can also happen if people are feeling overburdened or overwhelmed and decide to 'switch off' or do the bare minimum rather than keep trying to rise to the challenge. It may relate to poor time management on his part or changes in his role that have not been clearly explained or for which he is less competent. Alternatively, there may be some conflict in the team that you are not aware of that is impacting on his performance. It could relate to events happening outside the workplace or in his personal life. It could also be that you are the problem by not communicating what you want and need from him in a clear and consistent way.

You should aim to make him part of the solution by involving him in an honest discussion and setting new objectives and performance targets that will help you evaluate whether he is someone you can keep on your team. Keep these objectives achievable, clear, specific and measurable so that you can both assess and agree on whether he has met them. Both of you should keep a record of what you have agreed and the timeframes that you are using to assess his performance.


Finally, let him know that he can, and should, be open about any issues that are affecting his performance. It should be clear to him that you are trying to help him and if you can maintain a professional but supportive environment, he should be able to trust you to help him improve.

Congratulations on trying to be a great manager and not just giving up on your team mate and good luck with getting your great guy back on track!

Need some help to solve your career dilemma? Whether you are a recent graduate or a seasoned professional, our experienced careers coaches can work with you – on an individual or group basis – to help you get back on track with your career.
From online CV checking to face-to-face coaching, presentation skills training to making the right impact at interview, our careers services will help you reach your goals.
Contact us now to discuss your needs: careers@reconnectafrica.com
Welcome to the new, upgraded ReConnect Africa website.
Please help us provide you with information relevant to your needs by completing the fields below (just this once!)