5 Bad Employees Business Owners Need to Watch for

They chase away customers, they destroy your reputation, and they never feel any remorse about doing so. That’s right — we’re talking those dangerously toxic, bad employees. If you remain skeptical about how dastardly and devastating a bad employee can be for the success of your business… then you certainly didn’t read last week’s post “5 Deadly Dangers of an Awful Employee for Local Businesses.” So, if you need more convincing, check it out! If not, let’s get to shining a light on who those bad apples actually are.

Believe it or not — there are tons of businesses who have awful employees working for them and they probably don’t even know it. Don’t be one of those businesses! If you’ve got a bad employee working at your business, it’s vital you sniff them out and help them get over the hurdles that are holding them back.

Here are the 5 most common bad employees you may encounter along your time as an owner.

1. The Employee Who Talks Back to Customers

Working in the service industry is no easy task. In the ideal world every customer that walks through your door is cheery and kind; however, as an owner, we both know that’s not the case. Sometimes a customer walks in with a chip on their shoulder which can be totally out of your employee’s control.

However, what IS in your employees’ control is how to deal with that situation. In any customer facing job, there comes a time when you’ve just got to bite your tongue. Now, occasionally, customers may be difficult, but as the face of your business it’s vital employees always remain cool, calm, collected, and most importantly — respectful.

An employee that responds to customers in a rude or disrespectful manner is not one you want working for you, regardless of how the customer initially acted. It’s a complete cliche’ but nevertheless a timeless mantra to always keep in mind — the customer is always right.

2. The Employee Who Shows Disinterest

The second that customer enters your doors they are in essence the center of your world, and employees need to showcase that. Employees should always be engaged and above all else — show that they care. You want your employees to highlight the passion they have for their job and making customers happy.

An employee that shows that they don’t care or are disinterested is a big problem. Sometimes our personal lives can get a little messy, that’s totally understandable. However, the second any employee hits the floor and starts interacting with customers, personal baggage needs to fade to the backdrop. If that’s not possible, they frankly shouldn’t be working that shift. A disinterested or uncaring employee is a huge turn off to customers and can guarantee they’ll be heading somewhere else for their next appointment.

3. The Employee Who Only Talks About Him/Herself

The act of engaging in conversation alone does not retract disinterest. What’s more important is the contents of the conversation. You never want employees to just talk about themselves. That does nothing for fostering the relationship between your business and your customers. Instead you want employees to be more inquisitive. You want an employee who’s a great listener rather than a big talker. The more customer’s confide in your staff, the deeper the bond they form with your business. This works to build a strong sense of customer loyalty and can help you from losing them to a great deal across the street. If your employees can get customers to open up and really become a friend, it helps your service become more valued than any monetary value.

4. The Employee Who Doesn’t Know S/He is Doing

This one is rather on the nose but important to acknowledge nonetheless. Any employee that shows a lack of knowledge or expertise in the service they are providing needs to receive immediate training... or needs to go. All it takes is one bad haircut, one awful massage, or one disastrous blowout to lose a customer and potentially ruin your business’ reputation. That’s why it may be a little obvious to watch for employees who don’t entirely know what they’re doing, but it’s important to emphasize how vigilant owners must be in that watch in order to avoid disaster.

5. The Employee Who’s Too Lazy to Upsell

Unlike the other bad employees we’ve encountered on this trip, the employee who lacks the motivation to pitch an upsell doesn’t necessarily damage the relationship between your customers and your business, but causes you to miss out on tons of extra revenue. What you want is an employee who is engaged, picks up on trends in customer habits, and makes suggestions off them. This can allow them to make knowledgeable upsell suggestions that actually result in an extra sale. Otherwise, for employees who lack the drive — they’re a walking, talking missed opportunity.


Identifying the bad apples working for you isn’t always easy. See how Frederick can help you out!

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