I wish to say that I always look forward in reading your articles during my lunchtime. Some of the tips you gave are really helpful, some even change my habits and made me a better manager.
Recently, I found myself in a dilemma. One of my team member have been stealing in the company. No biggie at first because it is just some stationary missing every week. Nobody even noticed it until someone alert that her personal items are missing but it wasn’t serious as it was a cup and she wasn’t sure that she had not misplace it somewhere in the workplace. But last week, we had two wallets and a mobile phone gone missing. This is getting serious!
My team is worried. One for their personal items and next for whoever is stealing must be within the team, upon caught it will be immediate dismissal. It has caught the team and myself in a bad spot. I have countless of times pleaded the nameless person in my team to owe up so that I can deal with the situation in my way rather than to call in the security.
Some of the team members are getting anxious as each passing day and I look incompetent as I sit around and do nothing, just waiting for some signs, any signs.
Please help. I’ll take any advice as it comes!
Thank you so very much!
This is really serious. While I understand that you might want to protect your team members, I am strongly urging you to take the necessary action asap!
First, you need to talk to HR. Without naming names, you need to get HR involved in this to protect yourself, the victims’ interests and your company’s as well. Secondly, remember you are no Sherlock Holmes. As much as you like to give it time for someone to owe up to his or her mistakes, you have given plenty of time and no one seems to have any indication to owe up.
Understandably that you are trying to keep this within the team however, do stand in the shoes of your victims as well as those potential victims in your team. In the rest of others’ opinion, you are protecting a wrong doer beyond the well being of the rest of your team. It can be extremely upsetting if you are the one with the wallet stolen and yet your boss seems not to care or at least, not taking any proper actions.
Declare your action by announcing to the team that you are going to speak to HR and management this afternoon and if anyone has anything to say, they should do so before the appointment. Keep to your word and march straight to HR once time is up. No more making excuses or “what ifs”. Remember as a manager, you need to step up and take on tough decisions and responsibilities, and this is one of them. You are working with adults, not children. The one behind this should anticipate the consequences before the theft.
Good luck and let me know how it goes!