It's natural to show sympathy for your fellow human beings, but you shouldn't let your employees make excuses when they fail to fulfill their responsibilities, Avery Augustine writes. Explain to your employees how their actions have affected other people at your organization and ask questions to learn more about what's really going on, she recommends. "If you ask the right questions, you'll most often prove -- without explicitly saying it -- that many excuses aren't 100% justifiable," she writes.

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