2 Ways to Positively Identify and Fire Your Worst Employee

At the same time figure out how to cultivate the very best person you have.

learn more about Kelsey Ramsden

By Kelsey Ramsden • Dec 30, 2014

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

About two months ago I finally fired a total buzzkill, zero-productivity leech who was working for me. This person took every opportunity to work against me and I had tolerated, even supported it, for far too long.

If you're like I was about three months ago, you're thinking that you don't have anyone quite this bad working for you. Well, odds are that you are wrong. Someone closer than you think is tanking your opportunity to succeed and here is how he or she is doing it:

Related: Forget Time Management. Do This Instead and Be More Productive.

1. Avoiding conflict even though it is costing the business daily

2. Sticking her head in the sand about financial metrics

3. Wasting time analyzing things to death and taking no action

4. Telling you that you don't know what you are doing daily, while undermining your confidence and focus

5. Avoiding tasks by doing personal tasks during work hours

6. Wasting time on social media

Do you have anyone working with you like this?

Would you pay the person your salary to behave this way?

I did.

I paid a person as much as I make and treated her as if she were the founder and CEO.

I did this because I was that very employee. I was doing each of these things. I was the worst employee I had.

Related: 3 Small, Doable Ways to Become Wildly More Productive

It is not fun to admit this, but I am doing so because I think more entrepreneurs ought to.

Yes, entrepreneurs need to admit that often they are the biggest problems in their businesses. Go on, be downright brutally truthful: Would you hire yourself to do your job based on your performance over the past month?

If so, good for you, mate. Keep up the good work. If not, join the masses of entrepreneurs who fall into these performance ruts, whereby they indeed become the person most suitable for firing. If anyone else ever pulled this stuff, you would fire him or her outright. Yet, many entrepreneurs give themselves a free pass.

Well, I revoked mine. I gave myself two new mantras instead: I ask, "Is this what I pay you for?" and "What would a pro do?"

In just about any circumstance in which I am not performing to the standard I would expect of someone with equal responsibility, I find that posing one of the above two questions does the trick to keep me delivering results, focused, in an opportunity-driven mindset and deliberate in my actions.

If I'm being a financial-metric ostrich, it works just fine to ask, Is this what I pay you for?

When I'm analyzing things to death, I ask, What would a pro do?

If I'm undermining my own confidence, avoiding conflict or engaged in a social-media time suck, both these questions apply nicely.

If I indulge in personal tasks during work hours, it works to ask, Is this what I pay you for?

So, as you assess your own performance and perhaps look to fire your current self and replace him or her with a team member well positioned for success, use these two little mantra-questions to keep you on track to being the best employee you have.

After all, what would a pro do?

Related: Want Success? Check Your Business 'Energy.'

Kelsey Ramsden

CEO of Mind Cure Health

Kelsey is the President & CEO of life sciences company Mind Cure Health Inc., where she leads an innovative team providing psychedelic-assisted therapies. She has built multiple 8-figure businesses from the ground up and has twice been named Canada’s Top Female Entrepreneur

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