The situation that Doers dread most is being teamed with someone who lacks the skill, ability, and motivation to do the right things, the right way, for the right reason.
Such people are labeled as incompetents who walk around in a fog unaware of the negative impact they are having on those around them. They may not be willfully stupid nor do they screw up intentionally, but they continue to make costly mistakes every day.
As tempting as it is to write off these non-performers, consider instead that they are just people who at various times simply do not know what they are expected to do; or if they do know, they do not know how to do it right; or if they do know how to do it right, they see no particular benefit in doing it that way.
When you find yourself in a situation where working with such a person is forced upon you, how successful you are will depend upon how attached you are to your job, your compensation, and your company. If you have other reasons to be dissatisfied, then, why put up with incompetent coworkers as well?
After thoughtful reflection, you may decide that the situation is hopeless and there is nothing anyone can do. Now is a good time to consider changing jobs or transferring to another department.
On the other hand, if you like your job and are happy with your workplace, then you have three viable options:
- Grin and bear it, look the other way, and just put up with the situation in the hope that the incompetent may be found out and fired.
- Make a serious effort to try to change his or her behavior. Go over his or her head perhaps or lodge a complaint with the human resource department.
- Change the way you deal with incompetency, which affords you the luxury of experimenting with a variety of methods and doing so at your own pace.
If you selected options 1 or 2, then you may not find the strategies offered in the series of Blogs that follow to be very practical. Although, it will provide you with a wider perspective of the issues you face, you are not likely to change someone else’s behavior.
If you chose option 3, you are about to learn specific strategies and practical techniques for dealing with any and all incompetent coworkers, and how best to approach and/or work with them in order to achieve your goals and theirs too. You will also learn how to use The Competency Index to help you achieve your objective.
The Competency Index (CI) is a simple measure that gauges how deeply ingrained someone’s behavior might be. It enables you to determine which skills he or she is missing and which you will need to bring to the relationship in order to make it work.
Keep in mind that these are not bad people; they just behave in an incompetent manner under certain conditions or when placed in particular situations.
Incompetent people tend to be set in their ways and may not appreciate the need for doing anything differently. It will be difficult to influence a change in their behavior, but there are practical steps to be taken that might make a difference.