Overemployment Prevention Methods

No video calls, won’t commit to any in-person meetings, will cancel even the most basic meeting appointments, won’t answer even the most basic inquiries about what they are working on a macro level, won’t attend a (required) annual retreat/working session, and isn’t anywhere to be found on LinkedIn or the internet.

As I was not involved in their hiring process and I took on this person from another team, they consistently fall short on pretty much everything that isn’t a canned pop-platitude about PM processes.

I’m curious in hearing from you if you’ve suspected or discovered an OE person on your team and how you handled it.

Personally, if they took care of business, I wouldn’t mind at all, but they’ve already failed miserably on a number of fronts.


Regardless of OE status, failing to deliver is straight PIP worthy. Either they take it seriously and improve and you don’t have to waste time hiring, or you fire them against performance if they don’t shore up.


All of these factors together are suspicious, but does it really matter if there is not a personal issue they may need some time away from work to deal with?

I’d coach them up or out.


@KaranTrivedi, What you suggest is the plan of course, I’m just more curious if anyone has ever encountered an OE-er that isn’t quite pulling it off well. If they did it well, more power to them in my opinion.


Yes, there was a member of my staff who we were aware worked full-time elsewhere. consistently failed at tasks, gave haphazard answers, and was unable to articulate fundamental elements of the difficulties on which he was meant to be working. Finally, I merely instructed him to return the equipment because Friday was his last day. Due to the fact that someone is now actively tackling the issues he was supposed to be handling, we have advanced more without him.

In the end, it does not matter if the person has OE; what counts is that they are performing the task at hand.


Deal with them the same way you would any other underperforming employee; put them on a PIP, give them very specific performance goals to meet, arrange for required, regular video check-ins, and give them a timeframe to improve. To make sure they attend meetings, you can include clauses like “must contribute regularly to team meetings, planning, as necessary.”

I would not presume they are overworked because I have heard from folks who are depressed, have health concerns, etc. Where they were engaging in all of the behaviors you mention (apart from using LinkedIn), but where they simply needed coaching to get out of a difficult personal stretch.


@TinaGreist, Yes, the problem is more curious about how frequently other people have discovered OE individuals who were simply not pulling it off effectively as it is about questioning what needs to be done since that process is evident.


Although I can not say I have ever experienced it, I do not think there are any other solutions outside giving them work and documenting their failures. However, I would not care in principle if someone was able to work a second full-time job and still generate reliable and high-quality outcomes.


If you require yearly retreats and required in-person meetings, your management strategy is a complete failure.


@RohitKumar, There is a significant difference between meeting with a client and requiring in-person meetings as part of routine business (not ideal in this day and age). when the location is requested by both your client and your supervisor.

Regarding the retreat, the parent company demands yearly legal training and conformity with federal regulations. Although I dislike it, it is essential if people want to work here. It is not fascinating.

However, I must admit that I appreciate how you sidestepped the topic about whether the person in question is a dead weight.


I experienced a similar issue. But my HR is inefficient or very lenient; they do not uphold or enforce policies, or provide clear direction.

Has anyone discovered a solution to enforce 1:1 for a particular employee who never watches videos? This person’s only video appearance was during interviews. I do not believe any business or HR policy will permit video enforcement. Any ideas?


I’ve had team members that didn’t want to switch their camera on and quickly changed their tune when the alternative option presented was working from the office where there would be no such privacy issues.


@QuinnGomez, Makes sense. In my case, the company closed office and went remote!


If I had fewer morals, I might do this, but the guilt would consume me. On paper, it makes sense: Get hired at a lot of jobs, call them all until they fire you, and count the stacks in the interim.

It is evident that someone is not acting honestly. Fire them for cause if they are not performing.


Did they have a linked in? Call their old employer and ask if they’re employed or what was their experience?

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Dealing with an overemployed person on your team can be challenging, especially when they consistently fall short on their responsibilities and exhibit behaviors that hinder effective communication and collaboration. Here are a few steps you can consider taking to address the situation:

  1. Assess the situation: Before taking any action, gather concrete evidence of the individual’s underperformance and their avoidance of essential responsibilities. Document instances where they have failed to meet expectations or have shown a lack of engagement. This will help you build a case and provide examples when addressing the issue.
  2. Schedule a meeting: Request a one-on-one meeting with the person to discuss your concerns. Clearly communicate the expectations and performance standards they need to meet. Be specific about the areas where they have fallen short and how it affects the team’s overall performance.
  3. Seek their perspective: During the meeting, give the person an opportunity to share their perspective. They might have valid reasons for their behavior, such as personal issues or work-related challenges. Listen attentively and try to understand their point of view, but also make it clear that their current performance is not acceptable.
  4. Set clear expectations: Clearly define the responsibilities and objectives that the person is expected to fulfill. Be specific about deadlines, deliverables, and the level of engagement required. Ensure they understand the consequences of not meeting these expectations, such as performance reviews, reassignment, or termination.
  5. Provide support and resources: Offer assistance and resources to help the person improve their performance. This could include additional training, mentorship, or coaching. Consider whether there are any underlying factors contributing to their underperformance and explore ways to address those issues.
  6. Monitor progress: Keep a close eye on their progress and provide regular feedback and performance evaluations. Offer constructive criticism and recognition for any improvements made. Regular check-ins can help ensure they are on track and accountable for their responsibilities.
  7. Escalate if necessary: If the person continues to fall short despite your efforts, you may need to escalate the issue to higher management or HR, depending on your organization’s policies. Provide them with the documented evidence and express your concerns about the impact on the team and overall productivity.

It’s important to approach the situation with empathy and fairness, but also with a focus on maintaining the team’s productivity and achieving organizational goals.

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