“Like apples of gold in settings of silver is a word spoken in right circumstances.”

Pr 25:11 NAS

Critics point out what’s wrong, and leave you feeling bad about yourself. Coaches show you what you did wrong, teach you how to do it right, and leave you feeling better about yourself. Cheerleaders lift your spirits, offer their help, and assure you that you can succeed if you keep trying. So which of the three are you? If you tend to be one of those hard-driving, goal-oriented people, coaching someone may be a challenge for you. Perhaps you’re from the school of thought that believes a paycheck should be encouragement enough—especially if an employee is being generously compensated. If so—beware! You’re stuck in the Stone Age and in dire need of a mindset change! If you want people to be productive, learn how to build them up. You say, “But it’s not my natural inclination to want to coach poor performers. I just want them out.” Hold on there; you’re dealing with a human being, a person loved and valued by God! And with a little encouragement, some hand-holding, and lots of communication, you may end up with a level of productivity and loyalty the cocky superstar isn’t capable of. Yes, if you’ve “a bad apple” in the bunch you need to get rid of them before they infect the whole barrel. But before you resort to firing someone, try firing them up! Some of the people you work with just need to be presented with a clear vision, shown how they can be part of it, and enlightened about the incentives and rewards that come from being part of the team that’s fulfilling a vision.