It’s no picnic when you have to fire people for poor performance. Wayne Downing, a retired four-star general who ran the U.S. Army Special Forces, says you’ve got to do it. His advice:
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It often makes sense to give a fresh start to a poorly performing employee who has been complaining about discrimination. Place her in another position with a new supervisor, new co-workers and a clean disciplinary record. Then if her workplace problems persist, you can terminate her without worrying about retaliation claims.
What if a management consultant suggests that you find “young, energetic” people to take over? A court ruling last week sends a clear warning: Be careful who you listen to for advice … and where you write it down.
Sometimes, it takes a new manager or supervisor to see how poorly an employee is performing. If an employee who has been getting good reviews suddenly appears to slump under new leadership, don’t jump the gun and discipline the employee right away. Here’s a better approach ...
Supervisors who want to hand-select a particular employee for a job may be tempted to play fast and loose with the company promotion process. Watch out!
Companies that fire lots of employees get sued for discrimination by many of the castoffs. But all those terminations may be an indication of employee/management personality conflicts, not discrimination.
Remind supervisors that any comments they make about race or another protected characteristic can come back to haunt the company. It doesn’t much matter whether the comments come before or after a termination decision has been made.
The 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that an employee who was passed over for a promotion can’t later use the poor performance of the person who got the job to prove the decision was discriminatory. The case shows that courts are willing to let employers make mistakes; they won’t micromanage hiring and promotion decisions.
Q. If an employee is already on probation when she becomes pregnant, can we continue progressive discipline measures, including possible discharge?