It’s Time to Fire Your Employee When…

Lazy office employee with mobile phone at workplace

One of the biggest challenges a manager can face is determining whether it’s time to fire an employee. A termination is never easy to handle. As a result, many managers delay firing a worker. Even if letting them go is genuinely the best option for the company.

If you’re trying to figure out if it’s time to fire an employee, as well as how to handle a termination. Here’s what you need to know.

Signs It’s Time to Fire an Employee

Generally, certain signals indicate firing an employee may be the right move. One of the most significant is if productivity is falling. Especially after coaching, training, and other recovery efforts haven’t yielded results.

Attendance issues may also be a sign that a termination is on order. Frequent tardiness or missed days without a reasonable justification can be detrimental to their team and the company. Similarly, repeated policy violations, particularly if they continue to occur after a reprimand, indicate that termination may be a better move.

If complaints against the employee are piling up, that’s also a red flag. Whether they come from coworkers, customers, or vendors, frequent reports of poor experiences show that something is amiss.

An unwillingness to learn and grow on the job may also be problematic. This will often cause the employee to fall behind the curve, dragging down overall productivity and potentially introducing negativity into the workplace. Even pervasive gossiping or rumor spreading could be a reason to fire an employee, especially if their pot-stirring is harming the company’s culture.

Ultimately, if an employee isn’t meeting organizational standards even after attempts to correct the situation or is otherwise hindering operations, firing them could be the best move for the company. That way, you can refill the position with a better candidate as soon as possible.

How to Appropriately Terminate an Employee

Once you’ve decided that a termination is in order, you need to manage it appropriately. First, it’s critical that you handle the situation privately. This isn’t something that should occur in front of coworkers or in open spaces. Instead, bring them into your office.

If possible, speak with them at the end of the day. This decreases the number of other employees they may need to pass by, allowing them to leave with a bit of dignity.

Additionally, when you deliver the news, focus on the facts, not emotions. Let them know why they are being fired, providing clear evidence of the missteps that led to the decision. Ideally, you want to reference specific policies that led to the termination, showing that you followed any guidelines and that the situation has been handled in accordance with the rules up to and including at this point.

If they lash out, remain calm. Cover as much critical information as possible, such as the current state of any projects and the turning in of any company assets. Once the conversation draws to a close, always offer a handshake and wish them well.

Once the termination is handled and the now-former-employee leaves, you can begin looking toward the future. You’ve created an opportunity to bring in a possible top performer, allowing your company to recover and move forward with greater ease.

If you’d like to learn more, the staff at GSG Talent Solutions wants to hear from you. Contact us today.


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