Search
Advice » In the Workplace» Workplace Issues » Managers and Employee Terminati ...
Managers and Employee Termination

Managers and Employee Termination

Letting an employee go is a difficult situation most managers want to avoid, but with the right preparation and professionalism, you can get through such a tough talk with your dignity -- and your employee's -- intact.

Firing Best Practices

Another manager or HR representative should always be present, especially if terminating a potentially hostile employee or one who might twist your words or make false accusations. It is also best to include a balance of genders, says Lissa Weimelt, principal with The Hiring Experts, a retained executive search firm.

The best place to terminate is a private office or meeting room close to an exit -- there is nothing worse than an upset employee having to traipse through a workplace to find his way out.

Out of respect for and fairness to the employee, terminate as early in the workweek and day as possible. In addition, bring tissues and water as well as the phone number for an employee assistance program representative, if available, says Scott Cawood, PhD, president of ModernThink, an employee management consulting firm.

"If you let someone work all day, then they are giving to the company, and other employees will see this as disrespectful that you let them give all day long, or all week long, then fired them at the last possible moment," says Cawood, author of Destination Profit: Creating People-Profit Opportunities in Your Organization. "Fire them early and pay them for the day, but let them leave right after the meeting.

There are logistical issues to work out, too. Cawood once had to terminate an employee who used a company car. How will that employee get home? Finally, have any necessary paperwork or documents ready to avoid scrambling for them as the employee tries to leave.

What to Say and How to Say It

When the time comes, it's best to just get down to business, says Pamela Holland, author of Help! Was That a Career Limiting Move? and chief operating officer of Brody Communications. "The termination discussion should be as brief as possible," she says. "Your tone should be calm and assertive."

According to Weimelt, ex-employees often criticize former employers for giving vague reasons for termination. "Being prepared, staying calm and speaking respectfully is critical to a termination procedure," she says. "Many employees actually know when they are not doing a good job. If the termination itself is handled well, an ex-employee is less likely to blame the employer for being fired."

Managers should know that saying too much can get them into legal hot water, says Weimelt. Therefore, it's important to make a prepared, written statement that can be placed in the employee's personnel file, such as:

John, after reviewing your work performance for the last two months, we concluded that this job is not a good fit for your skills. Because of that, today is your last day. We thank you for working with us on a smooth transition. You will have time to gather your personal items, and we will assist you.

Cawood says it's important to get to the point quickly. "You should let someone know the real deal within three minutes of the start of the meeting," he says. "Don't worry about breaking the ice. There is nothing you can do that will make the message pleasurable."

After You Drop the Bomb

According to Weimelt, employees may have a variety of questions, including:

  • Can you give me an example of what I did wrong?
  • Will I get a reference from you?
  • Can I file for unemployment?
  • Are you going to tell other employees I am fired?
  • Do I get any severance?

The best policy overall is to avoid being backed into the specifics trap and refer any questions regarding company policy to HR.

Managers need to keep sight of the bigger picture. "The important thing to remember is that your role as a manager is to ensure that certain deliverables are being met in keeping with the company's strategic direction," says Holland. "When someone fails to do that in his or her job, either because of lack of ability or bad judgment, you must draw strength in the fact that by terminating that person, you are fulfilling your obligations and doing the right thing."

It's also important to remember that your delivery can help soften the blow. "There is never an easy way to share hard information," says Cawood. "You can, however, be sensitive to the employee's need to process the data, be upset and avoid being embarrassed."

Latest Jobs

Sears
Posted: 12/21/2014
West Palm Beach, FL, 33401
Best Trucking Job
Posted: 12/21/2014
Burlington, IA, 52601
MBFAYETTE
Posted: 12/21/2014
Fayetteville, NC, 28301
Best Trucking Job
Posted: 12/21/2014
Rochester, MN, 55904
mbSOL
Posted: 12/21/2014
Durham, NC, 27701

Want more personalized results?  Update Your Profile

 
 
 

Monster Communities

Teaching Community
Where teachers meet and learn.
ArtBistro
Create and connect.
Excelle
Networking for the career-minded woman.
Nursing Link
Where nurses call the shots.
More Monster Communities

Monster Partners

Scholarships
Scholarships, financial aid and more ways to pay for school.
Education.org
Find top campus and online degree programs.
Military.com
Military portal for the US Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard.
Financial Aid
Scholarships & financial aid.
Staffing for Government Jobs
Staffing and hiring solutions for federal government agency jobs.
More Monster Partners

Job Hunt Strategy

Six Ways to Make a Recruiter Hate You
If you want to blow your chances with recruiters -- and, by extension, with the companies they work for -- here are six perfect ways to do so.

Resumes & Cover Letters

Rev Up Your Resume to Relocate
Hoping to relocate? Get the ball rolling on landing the right job in the right location with these expert resume and cover letter tips.

Interviewing

100 Potential Interview Questions
Interview questions can run the gamut. You probably won't face all 100 of these, but you should still be prepared to answer at least some of them.

Salary & Benefits

10 Questions to Ask When Negotiating Salary
Most of us aren't natural negotiators, but asking these 10 questions during salary negotiations can help you get everything you deserve.

Employee Sourcing

Alt text
November Monster Employment Index Grows 13% Year-Over-Year, Tenth Consecutive Month of Positive Annual Growth.

For Seekers

Campus and Online Degrees
Advance your career and earn more with an online degree.
Free Salary Wizard
What are you worth? Find out and negotiate a better salary.
Research Careers
Get information on jobs and career paths to help guide your choices
Questions & Answers
Find answers to all your career related questions -- powered by Yahoo! Answers
Resume Distribution Service
Our distribution service puts your resume right in the hands of recruiters.
Resume Writing Services
Our experts will craft a keyword-rich resume that stands out in the crowd.
More Career Resources

For Employers

Career Ad Network
Target your job posting to more candidates on thousands of websites.
Hire Right Background Checks
Explore our background check packages to improve the quality of your hires.
Hiring Home Page
Find the best candidates for your business with Monster hiring solutions.
Job Postings
Find the right solution for your hiring needs. Starting at $99.
Power Resume Search
Monster's new search technology precisely matches people with your jobs.
Resource Center
Find staffing insights, labor trends, HR best practices and more.
Target Post
Connect with skilled, hourly and administrative candidates for only $99.

Social Media

Jobs on Twitter
Find jobs in your area and industry.
Monster Careers
Tune into our career advice and discussions tackling a wide range of topics and industries.
Monster Corporate & PR
Stay up-to-date on the latest news. Get the 'Who', 'What', 'When', and 'Why' on all things Monster related.
Monster Customer Service
Got a Monster question? We've got the answer. Whether you're a job seeker or employer, we can help you find the answers you need.
Monster for Employers
Find advice on hiring.
Follow Us
Check out our many pages and stay connected with the latest industry news, events, career advice and job openings.

Other Links

Monster Company Profiles
Explore companies and get information to guide your career decisions.
Compare Salaries
See how your pay stacks up to others in your field.
iPhone Application
Download the Monster app for iPhone and iPod touch.
Monster Job Seeker Blog
Monster Job Seeker Blog.
Monster Thinking Blog
Monster's Recruitment Trends Blog.
Jobs & Career Resources
Search Jobs:
For Employers: Post Jobs | Search Resumes | Advertise
About Monster | Work for Monster | Advertise with Us | AdChoices | Partner with Us | Investor Relations | Social Media
Terms of Use | Privacy Center | Accessibility Center | Help | Security | Contact Us | Sitemap | Mobile
©2014 Monster - All Rights Reserved U.S. Patents No. 5,832,497; 7,599,930 B1; 7,827,125 and 7,836,060 MWW - Looking for Monster Cable? - V: 2014.11.10.17-309
eTrustLogo