BY: Dan Phale*
Most of the times many managers and supervisors in various work institutions tend to groan about poor standards of services discharged by those who are under their command. However they seem to have very little or no time to make an in-depth analysis of everything in a bid to understand why such is the case. It is in this regard that I have decided to publish this article so that we discuss some of the various issues that negatively affect performance of the duty bearers.
First and foremost, we need to come to terms with the fact that there are quite many people who are well educated but are not employed. In a sharp contrast, those who are entrusted with the duty to work in certain fields are not suitably qualified for the job. Rather, they are recruited on the basis of nepotism, or regionalism, or tribalism, and so on and so forth. Usually, such are the people who do not perform their duties to the required best standards.
Let us check around, and we shall find out that even promotions are not done on merits… Not at all. Those with strong extraordinary unprofessional strings attached to their existence in work institutions have an upper hand to be elevated from one position to the next level than those without. The latter group of workers can, thus, work for many years without being considered for promotion let alone some kind of incentives; and, calling a spade a spade, they feel quite disappointed as well discouraged. Just imagine that somebody who has always portrayed a vast professional character and experience is at the receiving end of discriminatory and unfair treatment by his or her superiors.
Abuse of power and corrupt practices are other factors which have negative impact on delivery of services. What has horns cannot be wrapped in a sack… No matter how long it may be hidden, one day the horns shall protrude out, and the secret will be known by everybody. As a matter of fact leaders must lead by good examples; otherwise, eventually almost all junior employees will think that this is the right way to go. The wise old folks in Africa say that “when the chief limps, his subjects also limp.” You know, evil starts like a small seed and after germination it spreads like an oak tree.
In other circumstances, a superior in rank does not want to get views from those under his or her command. Even if he or she doesn’t know what to do, or goes astray in the line of duty, he or she doesn’t want or doesn’t accommodate views from the junior staff. Such are the know-it-all members of management. And this tendency is detrimental to the outcome of the intended objectives and goals.
There is another bad syndrome among some managers. More often than not, their eyes are blind such that they don’t seem to notice the good performance and achievements made by their junior workers. But when a very little mistake is committed, they swiftly produce insulting words or take very harsh administrative actions with little or no regard to the requirement of natural justice… This is very unfair.
Over and above, leadership is another key aspect in management of duties at every institution. How can there be the best quality services under unskilled and unsound leadership? And the issue of payments cannot be overemphasized; whereas little perks that are insufficient to match with the current cost of living are also a potential cause of poor performance of workers.
All in all, such issues as favouritism, abuse of power and corruption, unsound leadership, among other issues, bring about frustration among workers. And frustration is a catalyst for their poor standards in discharging duties. It is high time managers stopped being biased towards the selected group of their subordinates.