Employee issues are ruining my business…help!

This week's question from my portal “The Neagle Code: Directions for Life” comes from someone who wishes to remain anonymous.

Neagle Code Question

Hello David!

I’ve been in business for myself a couple of years, and I’m to the point where I’m ready to walk away because I’m having a hell of a time dealing with my employees. I tend to be kind and put their priorities and needs first. I feel like the conductor of a runaway train and I am afraid I will ruin my business success if something doesn’t change. What's your opinion?

Neagle Code Answer

Hi, and thanks for the question!

Dealing” with employees and “considering their needs” are two totally different things.

Because I’m not sure of the exact scenarios you are referencing, I’m going to make some assumptions in order to help you get some clarity about what’s going on in your business.

My guess is that you would rather be liked than prosperous.

Let me explain.

If you put your employees needs over the needs of your business because you are afraid that they won’t like you if you tell them no, you would rather be liked than prosperous.

If you avoid having the “difficult” conversations with your employees regarding expectations and responsibilities because you’re worried they won’t like you, you would rather be liked than prosperous.

You see, it is one thing to consider the needs to your employees; it’s an entirely different thing if your employees’ needs negatively affect your business.

Communication is key in any business setting, and if you’re having difficulty communicating for fear of what others will think, you’re putting your business in a very perilous position.

The key is to really become aware of what’s happening.

Most people experience this in their business because they fear the judgment of others.

Judgment is painful and therefore, they are willing to do anything to avoid it.

Freedom is in realizing that the judgment of others has nothing to do with you and everything to do with the person who is judging.

Employees respect a leader who communicates expectations and is confident and clear.


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  1. I love this response, David Neagle — simple, to the point, powerful and true. If we’ve taken care to hire the right team members, we can trust that and know that we are all on the same side and that the “heart” of the team really is with the success of the business. Other stuff just gets in the way sometimes to make us doubt that. And, if we don’t have the right team members in place, maybe it’s time to uplevel that.

    • Well said Charla, thanks for the post. When you take the time to find the team that stands for you and your core values, you really attract the right people to help move your business forward. Hire slow, fire fast. That has been my mantra from go when it comes to building a team and it has never steered me wrong. Now, occasionally you may encounter a situation where someone comes to your team that causes stresses or conflict. In that case, trust your instincts and let that person go. That way, you’ll get the right people on the bus and fast track your success.

  2. I agree with your response. I also think that by showing more authority in that situation that will also set an example for the employees. The owner might have to be absent for a business trip or sickness etc. He/She needs somebody who can display leadership skills to run things while they are handling other business.

    • You have to have clear expectations Christie, that is evident. Leaders lead by example, and you set them up for success by showing them early on what you expect them to accomplish. I am truly blessed to have an amazing team who take pride in their prospective roles because they have bought into my vision and core business principles. When you get to this place, each person owns their role without having to micro manage every step of the way. It’s really special when that happens because there are things that they do so much better than I do and I trust they are going to do their very best in everything they do. The right people are out there, its just a matter of finding them. Thanks for the post.

  3. hello, i would like to email David a private message that he would only read. Is there a personal email address that i may be able to contact him with. thank you