Under-performing. Engaging in dishonest behavior. Making serious mistakes on the job. Personality clashes.
Regardless of the reason an employee is on his way out the door, you should always give each potential termination due consideration before taking any action. Diligence when firing does more than just protect your organization; it also helps you make the right decision and ultimately learn something from the experience, such as:
- Is firing really the best option?
- Is there a systemic problem with your organization’s culture or hiring process?
- Did you fail the employee in some way?
Whenever you’re faced with the prospect of terminating an employee, determine how the employee wound up on the chopping block and what you can do to prevent it from happening again. Before you pull the trigger, consider these questions from Wood Personnel:
- Did you provide the employee with clear expectations? As a responsible employer, make sure the immediate supervisor has: set clear performance goals; communicated those in writing; stated how they will be measured; and explained consequences for non-performance.
- Did you offer consistent, clear feedback? In performance-based firing situations, your employee should have also received specific feedback on what he has been doing wrong, and what he should have improved upon. Every employee needs feedback to improve his performance. It’s your job to provide it.
- Did the employee have the training, support and resources he needed to do his job? Your employee may have known what was expected of him, but did he get what he needed from you to perform his job well? Consider whether your employee may simply need additional tools and training to perform his job correctly, or if firing him is really the best option.
- Is there a larger problem with engagement or your corporate culture? If an employee has disengaged from your company, why did it happen? More importantly, is there something you can still do to remedy the situation (e.g., motivate him in a different way to improve his performance) – and avoid firing him?
- Could this person succeed in another position? Do you have a talented individual who is just in the wrong job? Before you terminate someone, ask yourself if you’ve placed that individual in the role that best suits his natural strengths and personality style.
- Was there a mismatch between the employee and the job from day one? Often, an issue with the hiring process leads to poor candidate selection (and ultimately to hiring the wrong person for the job). Critically examine your recruiting, interviewing and selection processes to identify and eliminate potential problems. Or, just give Wood Personnel a call! As a leading Middle TN recruiting agency we have the experience, resources and proven processes to guarantee the right match, every time.
- Still ready to pull the trigger? If you are absolutely sure you need to terminate the employee, read this post on how to fire an employee the right way.