Problem Employee


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Reasons to Terminate a Problem Employee

Here is a proven way to fire a problem employee



A problem employee can damage your business in many ways. He or she can slow down production, cause other employees to become disgruntled, be a safety hazard, or even cause legal troubles. Therefore, it is important for you to either get a problem employee in shape or to terminate him or her before it leads to more problems.

Having Production Slowed by a Problem Employee

You may not realize it, but a problem employee can significantly slow down production. For example, if the problem employee is routinely late arriving to work, production may cease altogether as the other workers wait for the employee to arrive. Or, even if production continues, it may slow down as a less skilled worker tries to take over. The same is true for an employee who purposely works slowly, who abuses break privileges, or who simply doesn’t pay attention to his or her job and makes too many mistakes.

Causing Other Employees to Become Disgruntled Because of a Problem Employee

If you do not take action against the problem employee, this person can quickly and easily cause your other employees to become disgruntled. First, your other employees may believe you are discriminating against them when you come down on them and do not come down on the problem employee. And, by allowing the problem employee to get away with his or her behavior, you are setting a precedent that tells your other employees it is OK to behave in a problematic way. Before you know it, you will have an entire crew of problem employees rather than just one!

Experiencing Safety Hazards Because of a Problem Employee

A problem employee can easily be a safety hazard for your other employees as well as for him or herself. If the problem employee is negligent, for example, he or she may not properly follow safety procedures. Even a chronically late problem employee can cause safety problems as other employees try to pick up the slack or to speed up and catch up on production when the employee finally makes it in.

Experiencing Legal Problems Because of a Problem Employee

A problem employee puts you at an increased risk of experiencing legal problems. Other employees may file suit against you for failure to act on the problems you are having with the employee. If the employee is harassing other employees, for example, a court can find you guilty of failing to discipline the employee for his or her actions. In addition, if the problem employee is violating safety procedures and hurts someone, a court will find you liable.

So, while it may be difficult to fire an employee, particularly if you have formed a relationship with that person, you must consider your business and your other employees. Do what is right and remove the problem employee from your workforce before you are sorry you didn’t.

Here's what I did after I got sick and tired of my problem employee


Planning To Fire?

In the planning to fire an employee, there are several things to consider:

*Do I need to give the employee a letter of termination? If you fire an employee for “cause,” a clear, well-written statement of the reasons for the termination will inhibit any future legal action by the employee.

* Have I planned out exactly what I am going to say when I fire an employee? A brief set of notes will help you be sure to “cover all the bases” when you call the employee in for the termination interview.

*Have I given the employee opportunity to change? In other words, have I ever counseled the employee, given a warning letter, provided enough training? Failure to follow such procedures may come back to haunt you in a labor dispute.

*Do I need to prepare a letter of recommendation? You should not give an employee whom you fire “for cause” any recommendations. Other employees, however, may merit such consideration, and a short letter of recommendation may take the edge off the unpleasant situation.

These are just a few of the questions that could make matters easier when it comes time to fire an employee. There are many resources available to guide you through this process. If you take the time to collect this information before you fire an employee, it will make the termination go more smoothly and prevent legal problems later.

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