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Poor attitude and work ethic? Don’t give that promotion

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

You want to promote the most capable and promising employees and encourage low performers to improve. That may mean pointing out some painful realities when an employee is passed over for promotion.

Done sensitively, pointing out poor attitude and lack of a strong work ethic won’t fuel a lawsuit.

Recent case: Robert Dickerson, who has a mental impairment, worked as a part-time custodian. He wanted a promotion to full time.

He was rejected because his bosses said he had a poor attitude and frequently refused to complete tasks.

He sued, alleging disability discrimination.

The court refused to second-guess the employer’s assessment and found no evidence that disability discrimination had anything to do with the promotion decision. (Dickerson v. Belleville Community College, et al., No. 08-716, SD IL, 2010)

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