I list here the top five reasons which often results in poor performance at work. What are yours (if any)?

Bored at Work
Nothing exciting happening at that data crunching job and no stimulants to perform better in your present job can make even a very well paying job just another task to be completed. And when the passion, excitement and enthusiasm for a task wanes, performance at work goes on a downslide.

Various studies over the years relate boredom to poor performance at work, according to an article in The Psychologist, boredom has been associated with a range of negative outcomes including poor performance at work and accidents (e.g. Branton, 1970), absenteeism (e.g. Brisset & Snow, 1993), errors stress, increased risk taking/thrill seeking (e.g. O’Hanlon 1981), sleepiness (e.g. Grose 1989), stress-related health problems such as heart attacks (e.g. Alfredson et al., 1982), job dissatisfaction (e.g. Caplan et al., 1975) and even property damage (Drory, 1982).

When you are bored at work the job or the work environment (or both) does not appeal to you anymore.

“Find something you love to do and you’ll never have to work a day in your life” — Harvey MacKay


Hate your Boss

According to an article in EmploymentTimes
“Lack of open, honest communication is at the root of 80 percent of problems at work.Nearly 75 percent of employees who leave their jobs do so because of communication issues with their boss – not money.The number one factor that drives employees to be engaged in their job is their relationship with their boss.”

Think about this:

Often the reason for poor performance at work is not a “bad boss” but poor communication with your team or the manager. Is the reason for poor performance your boss’s attitude towards your or miscommunication/ no communication with him/her.


Jurassic Skill-set

Have you paused to think about whether this statement could be true in your situation – It is not “them”, it is you.
Your skills are not the latest and greatest and you have made no efforts to rise above the rest to polish your skills or acquire new ones. Interest in work dives to a new low when you find yourself in adept at work. Or ponder on another related reason — though you are skilled at other jobs the one you are at now does not use those skills to the full potential or to your complete interest.

Some questions to ask yourself here are:

  • Have you recently attended a company training?
  • Have you or your boss initiated a meeting to discuss your short-term or long-term career goals?
  • Have you taken time to perform a job analysis or your performance over the last few months at your present work?
  • Have you networked with colleagues in other divisions to find out the nature of work in different groups or with the Human retargets personnel to analyze the other opportunities that could excite you to a more satisfying job?

If not, think about it.


Tough to Meet Expectations at Work

At times even when your skills are up-to the mark, the expectations from your boss and team is too much to meet. This often results from poor performance management system within the company or the lack of doing so through your manager. Employees get accused of not being able to deliver on time or the poor quality of work because it was not defined well in the first place.
Some questions to ask yourself:

  • Were the deliverable for the project and expectations conveyed to you up-front or during the project?
  • Have you been smart in the past to keep a record/document your duties and also accomplishments?

If not, think about it.


Poor Health

A healthy mind resides in a healthy body – always true. Your health affects your mental state and your absenteeism from work at frequent intervals also affects your performance at work.

  • If you are not performing your best – do a quick check-up on yourself – could some mental or physical problems be the reason for the lack of interest in your present occupation?
  • Is it the work environment that is making you sick (no pun intended I literally mean it here) or there are other physical problems which is making your current job drudgery?
  • And of course, Extreme stress and fatigue at work could be a related reason.


And then there is the bottom line – YOUR ATTITUDE

A simple saying can say it all, think about it:
“Work is either fun or drudgery. It depends on your attitude. I like fun.” — Colleen C. Barrett



Retargets on Managing Poor Performance at Work

The United States office of Personnel Management has a booklet to help you address and resolve poor performance. It forewarns that the guidance provided in the booklet should be used in concert with the technical advice you receive from your agency’s human retargets staff. The booklet is titled: Addressing and Resolving Poor Performance -A Guide for Supervisors