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You expect workers to get to work on time. Sure, occasional problems with traffic or family issues sometimes make people late. But chronic tardiness is another thing altogether.

While most managers track tardies, they should do more. How? By issuing a consistent series of oral and written warnings (see below) and documenting each. Then follow up to see if the behavior improves.

Often it does improve, temporarily. Then it’s back to the same old problem—late arrivals and all the disruption that follows.

Your documentation will be worth its weight in gold if you fire the employee and he or she sues for some kind of discrimination. If you can show you let the employee know about your concerns and the consequences, she would have a hard time winning her case.

Recent case: Allison Jeffrey was often late for work. Her bosses warned her repeatedly and kept good notes on those rebukes. After each warning, Jeffrey began arri...(register to read more)

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