It can be frustrating working with someone who’s not quite up to the task. But consider these points before you get too angry at them.
by Amber Shah
When it seems like no one is noticing…Don’t worry; they will
When you are dealing with someone who is incompetent or conniving, often it can feel like you know something about this person that everyone else doesn’t. Like maybe other people just aren’t paying attention or maybe this person is actually tricking them.
The big thing here is to have some faith in human nature. If they’re dumb, sooner or later they’re going to do something dumb in front of everyone else, and then the secret’s out. If they’re mean, sooner or later they’re going to be mean in front of everyone else, and then the secret’s out. Same goes for being rude, aggressive, clueless, ignorant, etc. Patience, grasshopper.
When faced with a screw-up…forgive first
Yes, I realize I just got a little woo-woo New-Age-ish on you, but the bottom line is: everyone screws up. Do you want people to freak out at you if you screw up? The answer is either yes, because you hate yourself, or no, because you’re normal. So you give yourself a break and do the same for the other guy.
Furthermore, if someone placed him in a job that’s over his head, that’s not particularly his fault, either. Would you really respect him any further if he said “Stop, wait a minute. I’m not smart enough for this”? Probably not, and that’s not even considering the fact that if he’s not smart enough to do the job, then maybe he’s not smart enough to realize he can’t do the job. So blame the guy above him.
What’s best for the goose is best for the gander
Despite the multitude of people who are incompetent at their jobs, when it actually comes time to fire someone, everyone gets trigger shy. On the one hand, this is totally normal, totally human behavior. This guy is nice. He’s got kids. He’s going to feel bad. What’s he going to do now?
It’s not good for the business to have someone incompetent. In addition to the work not getting done, other people have to pick up the slack, you might be losing customers and it’s bad for morale. But it’s not just about the business. The thing is that people are not happy when they are not performing well. It still might be enough for him not to leave just because of complacency or whatever, but that’s not the point.
Maybe he’ll find another job at your competitors (win), or maybe he’ll finally realize he sucks at that job and follow his passion for…whatever (win). The point is that it’s not for us to predict the future; it’s just to say that we’re all at our best and happiest when we’re productive.