The other day a contractor received some feedback on their performance. An email stating certain “facts”. These facts were the percentages of how much work the contractor had completed in a timely fashion.
These statistics suggested that the contractor was not meeting the standards set by the organisation. Uh oh.
That was the only information provided. No commentary on whether this was good or bad. No checking in. Just “facts”.
The contractor shrugged. This was common. A random email suggesting that their work was not meeting the target. No biggie. This happened all the time. They still kept being given work. This email was a non-story. It meant nothing. The organisation was just ticking a box saying they had provided feedback. Who cares? Delete!
This organisation really needs the work the contractor did to be completed. It’s difficult work; work that no-one really wants to do. They struggle to find competent contractors. Everyone knows this.
The organisation has all these rules built into the contract about performance and they have extraordinary expectations; most of which are not generally achievable. The organisation occasionally rattles the cage and threatens the contractors that they need to be 100% compliant to keep being given work, but the contractors all know that the managers are toothless tigers because there is no-one else who is willing to put up their hands to do this work. The organisation is completely dependent on the contractors. And yet they appear to treat the contractors with disdain.
What a wasted opportunity for this organisation. And how difficult is it for the contractors to feel engaged and valued; when there is a real sense that the organisation doesn’t care about them but keeps them around because they need them.
How much better would the outcomes be if the organisation looked after the contractors? What if the organisation made an effort to have a real and meaningful relationship with the contractors? What if, as a result of supporting the contractors and asking them if they are okay or finding out how else they could support them, the contractors felt more engaged and cared more about meeting the KPIs outlined in their contracts.