Should he stay or should he go? Sometimes, a marginal worker shows promise and immediate termination isn’t warranted. Plus, you’re concerned that a lawsuit may follow the firing. In such cases, consider drafting a last-chance agreement for the employee.
Think of it as hitting the reset button. Theby keeping his or her job. You benefit because any eventual termination will be clean—and it shows a court you acted in good faith before pulling the trigger.
A last-chance agreement is often the next-to-last step (before termination) in aprocess. It is typically tied to a performance improvement plan that spells out what an underperforming or misbehaving employee must do differently in order to remain employed.
It is a legally binding contract. If the employee violates the terms, he or she will suffer the consequences.
Here is what your last-chance agreements should include:
- The reason the last-chance agreement is warranted. What problems led up to this point in the disciplinary process?
- The terms and conditions that must be met by the employee, including a deadline.
- The time frame that the agreement is effective. One year is common, but they can be indefinite.
- The consequences of failing to satisfy the terms of the agreement.
- An acknowledgment that the employee has read and understands the agreement, which you both sign.
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