How do you handle situations when your staff needs guidance?  I was reminded of this philosophy last evening when on a walk in the neighborhood.  A woman was in the front yard ripping on her approximately 12 year old son pretty harshly.  His friends were in the yard with them.  My wife said, “I remember when my mom did that to me with my friends around, it still has a bad taste in my mouth”.

The Four P’s

You should always handle Problems in Private, and Praise in Public.  When someone needs to be counseled due to problems (examples: late to work, failing to complete paperwork, etc.) take them in to a private office and review the problem and the plan to alleviate the problem one on one.  Do not embarrass them in front of their co-workers or even worse, patients.  Your goal here is fix the problem, not to humiliate your employee.

On the other hand, always give Praise in Public.  Make sure your “attaboys” are witnessed by other employees.  You want two things to happen: the praised employee to feel justifiably proud that they have excelled, and your other staff members to be encouraged by this example.

The four P’s are very simple: Praise in Public, Problems in Private.