With all the staff reductions many employers have done over the recent years, fewer people are left with more responsibilities, and this can lead to performance issues, particularly among managers, says Jason Carney, director of human resources at WorkSmart Systems Inc., a professional employer organization in Indianapolis. Many managers are put into supervisory roles because of their success at the practitioner level, but once they enter those managerial positions, they also have to oversee employees on top of their basic job requirements. By touching so many different levels on a daily basis, performance in one of those areas could very well fall behind company standards.  

"An engineer, for example, will spend a lot of their time engineering and probably not as much time as they should managing people," Carney says. "They're not just going to be a manager; they're going to be a practitioner and a manager, so from that perspective alone, you have a lot more opportunity for performance issues."

Solving performance issues is important for all positions, but it is especially critical when the problem comes from a supervisor, says Mary Herrmann, managing director of executive coaching for BPI Group, a global management and HR consulting firm in Chicago. Supervisors hold great influence on the company because of the other employees they manage. If a supervisor is having a problem, this could trickle down to others.

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