Saying “you’re fired” isn’t easy for anyone.

Employees are like puzzle pieces. When they fit with your organization, the relationship creates a clear vision of the bigger picture and mission. But no matter how hard you push, rotate, or wish the wrong piece to fit, it won’t. If one of your team members is not right for the organization, keeping them in the mix takes away from efficiency and a cooperative work environment.

5 tips for letting go of sub-par employees

1. Keep detailed feedback records. Make sure a clear understanding of your expectations and their performance exists from the start. The decision to fire an employee should not be unexpected; provide them with ample opportunity to succeed before resorting to firing.

2. Get over the guilt. Focus on the future and best interests of the organization and staff morale. Managing sub-par employees costs more time, money, and productivity than hiring someone better suited for the role.

3. Be direct and to the point. Use the words “terminate,” “let you go,” or “fire.” Write a script if necessary and prepare a list of items to cover during the conversation. Showing sympathy is fine, but stay focused and level-headed.

4. Be respectful. Avoid accusations or pointing the finger and don’t become defensive. Thank the employee for their efforts, shake hands, and offer them a reference if appropriate. There is no need for hostility.

5. Promptly notify the rest of your staff. Avoid rumor spreading or gossip, but also prepare your staff for the change.

In addition, be clear and prepared in discussing severance, unemployment benefits, and how you will characterize the dismissal.

Letting a mismatched employee go can be positive for your organization. It lets them be the right fit for another puzzle. If your organization doesn’t have a dedicated HR professional on staff, consult with appropriate members on your board and your lawyer if you feel you need legal advice regarding any employee termination concerns.

For more guidance about how to let an employee go and not miss critical deadlines, contact Brandi Scott at PNP Staffing Group.

Thanks to Sarah Daxton/ThirdSector Today

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