EP25: Document for Ease of Mind, Teaching Tools and Freedom

DTD Episode 25 Show Notes
Document for Ease of Mind, Teaching Tools and Freedom

Click to download the Show Notes for Defeat the Drama Podcast Episode 25

EaseofMindIt happened again!  I met with a client who really needs to terminate an employee but can’t.

Why?  Because they don’t have any documentation of how she does her job.

It’s the handcuffs that hold a poor performer in their position.

Rarely does a great performer resort to empowering themselves by hoarding information.  It’s always the ones you want to remove.  Instead of exiting them out the door my clients feel stuck.

In this most recent example it’s an administrative support individual who has been the sole user of a very important database.  She helped develop it, created all the passwords, inputs all the data and writes all the reports to make sense of the information.   No one else knows anything about any of it.  They feed her the information on paper and she does what she does with it.  A very large program, integral to the organization, relies on the database to exist.  They cannot function without the information within.

It all started so innocently.  They asked her to be involved.  She took great initiative to make it all happen.  Initially they were thrilled with her enthusiasm.  Over time, however, the power she has generated has gone to her head.  She’s treating everyone horribly and is holding the organization hostage over the valuable information that only she can access.

It’s escalated to a point where something must be done.  But, they cannot let her go without a backup plan.  How do you create a backup plan when the employee is focused on keeping the power to keep the job?  Had they asked for documentation all along they wouldn’t have ended up in this situation.

So, please, don’t let this be you!

Document ~ Document ~ Document!

It might not be a power hungry employee.  It could be a team member who falls ill or quits or a vendor that stops performing well.  You never know when you’ll need to gain access to information or take over a process.


Document processes.

Document passwords.

Document important phone numbers and procedures.

Document where to find important forms.

Document help desk numbers and web addresses.

Document access points and passwords to all of your digital assets, Facebook, websites, Twitter accounts, business LinkedIn profiles, Google+, Pinterest.

If you are the owner, make sure that you are an admin on your Facebook business page.

Attach your business page to a business owner personal page rather than the 20 something’s page who just started working for you.

My husband owns a social media company and is constantly trying to gain access to digital landscapes that have been high jacked by former employees or outsourced relationships gone awry.

Know how to access your valuable information!

Do it now!

Don’t wait until you are totally fed up with an employee or a vendor.

Beyond peace of mind and freedom, great documentation will provide you with a training tool for new employees.  It will allow co-workers to easily cover for each other while on vacation or leave.  And it is the first step to analyzing processes to determine whether the work could be done more efficiently.

I am begging you!  If you are one of the many leaders who has not required your team to document EVERYTHING start now!  It might seem daunting.  It’s okay.  Just start!  A partially documented department is still better than the one without.  Chunk it down.  Start today and then keep at it a little at a time.  Even if each employee carves out 30 minutes per week it’s a start.

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