I am a mid-level academic administrator who supervises a few dozen faculty. Of those, maybe two or three make occasional but persistent misjudgments that require some time disentangling. None of these are particularly serious--they're on the level of mislaying paperwork, failing to follow up on commitments, or making requests that they should know cannot be approved--but each incident does take my time to resolve, and oftentimes it wastes student, staff, or colleagues' time.
My concern is not about individual incidents but the energy it takes to treat these colleagues fairly. Over the medium and long term, this pattern tends to erode my trust in their professional judgment. But because they are generally contributing members of my unit, I want to and should treat them like their colleagues. The problem? Every time a potential issue comes up, some amount of effort goes into focusing on the issue at hand and not the broader pattern that makes me think "Oh, no, not again." I feel like I am in a behavioral-economics experiment, trying to find out how much energy it takes for me to keep my focus.
Any suggestions you have for not letting such patterns be draining in the long run?
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