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What To Do When You Must Fire an Employee

For most business owners, firing employees is one of the most unpleasant tasks associated with operating a company. Unfortunately, you must let go of employees when they are failing to complete assignments properly or your company is struggling financially. When you find yourself in the unfortunate position of having to terminate your relationship with an employee or a contractor, the Key Biscayne Chamber of Commerce offers these steps to make the process easier.


Understand the Reason for Your Decision

If an employee or contractor is not complying with your company standards or completing job assignments, it's time to terminate. You may need to cut ties with employees if you must downsize the business. Sometimes, you also need to let go of workers who consistently fail to produce adequate work. If a contractor fails to comply with the terms set forth by your contract, you need to find a new contractor. If you have a legally binding document, you may be entitled to compensation for damages to your business reputation due to your contractor failing to complete work.


Pull Documentation

Every company has documentation for its employees. Many of these documents are incident reports or notes on an employee's performance. If you need to prove that an employee is not complying with company standards, every incident should be documented. You can simplify the management of employee documentation by digitizing all of your paper files and creating a PDF. Using an online extraction tool, you can just extract the pages you want from existing PDFs and place them into new documents.


Have a Conversation

Discussing termination with an employee is uncomfortable. Even if they deserve to be let go because of their actions, you may worry about how your decision impacts their family and financial status. You may also worry about how your employee will react to the news. For this reason, it is crucial to use kind, empathetic language to show that you care about how your worker is feeling. However, you also need to be blunt and specific about what led to your decision to terminate. If the employee has a long history of problematic incidents, make sure you point out each one and help him or her understand exactly why you need to terminate.


It's also important to hold the conversation in private. Although one study found that 40% of American workers have been fired at least once, it is still an embarrassing incident for many people. There is no reason to embarrass your workers further by announcing their shortcomings to the entire office. Have the termination discussion in a private space so that your employee can feel his or her feelings without embarrassment.


Inform the Rest of the Office

Regardless of whether you fire an employee in private or not, the rest of the office will find out about your action soon. Being honest about the termination is the best way to minimize gossip around the office and keep your company running productively. Keep the conversation with your remaining employees brief and give them a basic idea of what happened without going into detail. Avoiding the conversation invites remaining workers to create outlandish stories that could damage your business's reputation.


Firing employees is not a fun job, but it is often necessary for business growth. Be kind and empathetic to the employees you must terminate, and use these tips to make this all-too unpleasant task less difficult..

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