How should I fire an employee?

Firing employees: the door is in front!

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The Termination of employees is an uncomfortable and unpopular task. Quite a few bosses therefore try to delay the decision as long as possible or even to pass it on to other managers. Fatal! In this way, the tense situation can develop its own momentum, the problems in the team can even grow, and in the eyes of the other employees, such a manager usually loses authority. Problematic Dismiss employees should always be the last step, preceded by discussions, attempted solutions, and possibly also disciplinary measures. But if these remain ineffective, the discharge should not be put off the back burner ...

Dismissing employees: tact and patience

Such personal appraisals require a lot of tact. It happens quickly Assignments of blame, allegations, or charges - also on the part of the employee. The counter-reaction is understandable from a human point of view, but it requires an objective, sovereign reaction. The facts alone count. In particular if the employee concerned ...

  • the required power does not work and the degradation in performance becomes a problem.
  • be through behavior becomes a problem for colleagues and disturbs the team.
  • Customers alienated or the Relationship with customers damaged.
  • the company Theft, misconduct or defamation Damage occurs.
  • permanent destructive and only criticizes and slows down all processes and procedures, but never makes constructive suggestions.

Typically this is structured Separation process in four phases:

    The outplacement phase

  • Entrepreneurial decision, definition of the project title
  • Negotiation of a reconciliation of interests and a social plan
  • Meticulous preparation of the separation talks
  • Employee selection (qualification or separation)

The separation phase

  • Discussions about transfer, change, amicable solution
  • Clear message: separation / termination
  • Talks about bonding and team building with those who remain

The new placement phase

  • Career coaching for those who walk
  • Reorganization and team building for those who remain
  • Retention and revitalization of the (new) team

The evaluation phase

  • Critical appreciation of the downsizing
  • Critical consideration of the project execution
  • Deriving knowledge about the separation culture

The Key role have the managers who have to deliver the bad news. You are in the most delicate position:

  • If you make mistakes, not only does your reputation suffer with those who remain and that reputation towards their boss, but also that of the company.
  • If you do everything right, it still remains a dirty job for which you can hardly take credit.

If the employee is dismissed for one or more reasons, managers should not only focus on the termination, but also on the remaining employees. A good postprocessing for the Separation culture just as essential as the preliminary talks.

When in doubt, bosses should talk to their team talk about the process and explain why it was inevitable to fire the employee and that it was the result of a long process. Anyone who makes it clear that he or she is ready to fire employees, but sees this decision as the last resort in a number of options, can do so the respect and trust of the remaining employees to back up.

Advice for nasty office types

Do you work in a madhouse with dazzlers, divas and cholerics? Then be sure to read our detailed guide for colleagues from hell - what makes them tick and how to deal with them ...

Firing employees: 7 signs of lousy employees

Unpleasant colleagues at least have the pleasant side effect that you can grow with them. Quite a few experience real growth spurts at this point in the job - thanks to profile neurotics who regularly steal their ideas; Careerists who give them seemingly well-intentioned advice in the mornings that turn out to be a trap in the afternoons; Pukethat silence everyone; Creeps with outbursts of anger; to envious people and boasters who pretend they have just climbed Mount Everest for the first time. Many a colleague lives by the principle that treating someone like a raw egg can also mean hitting them in the pan. Well, thank you ...

So let's talk Tacheles: There are not only nasty bosses - some colleagues can do that too Make job hell. Even if we believe that you don't really need a lot of warning signs to unmask such annoyances in time, a little reflection never hurts.

These are already 7 signs of lousy employees:

  1. You're always late.

    Whether for work, a meeting or lunch - these guys like to keep their colleagues waiting. That can also be a subtle power strategy, motto: "Nothing works here without me ..." Nevertheless, it remains grossly impolite. Or in other words: being unpunctual is living arrogance.

  2. You don't finish anything.

    Thinking-lazy colleagues who start with good ideas but then tire of thinking them through and finishing them are the plague. They may have good intentions, but they always remain part of the problem, not part of the solution. They are like children who want a dog without thinking about who goes for a walk afterwards, pays the vet and takes care of it on vacation. Ultimately, everyone has ideas, but only the makers are productive.

  3. You make too many excuses.

    Mistakes happen to everyone. That's human. But if the same mistakes happen again and again or someone just fails because of the same type of error, like forgetting something here, forgetting something there, at some point it just gets annoying. And the excuses are no longer convincing either. Because behind it there is either a veritable organizational problem or simply stupidity and unwillingness to learn.

  4. You gossip too much.

    There are colleagues who find every fly in the ointment, complain about every project and also know exactly why this or that colleague is bad. Real bad guys. The short version would also go like this: "Everyone (s) shit except me." It is clear that this does not necessarily show mental maturity and a good character when someone has to define himself by devaluing others. Nothing against the occasional gossip. Nevertheless, nothing is more repulsive than a parasitic colleague who only spreads bad karma everywhere and, through the gossip, comes out as a wind machine and localized leak.

  5. You keep making excuses.

    Of course, nobody likes surprises. But sometimes something does go wrong: The customer would like to have another important change or the project has to be finished and everyone is already late. There is only one thing to do in this situation: grit your teeth and go the extra mile with your colleagues, no matter how fun it is to work overtime. However, anyone who repeatedly stands out as a slacker with transparent excuses in such cases reveals not only zero team spirit, but also a stunted work ethic.

  6. Nobody wants to work with them.

    At the latest when colleagues avoid contact and do not want to tackle any other projects together, the warning sign should be enough. To blame everything on potential bullying now would be too easy. The reason also be: Nobody wants to work together, because that only means that the work gets stuck with you, but the lousy worker claims the fame for it.

  7. You have no idea.

    And nothing. Not the faintest glimmer, the concentrated incompetence. Somebody like that just slows everyone down and only makes things worse. In some cases, the Peter principle can also be the cause. If not: Avoid the hollow body where you can ...

Further advice on termination

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May 22, 2020Author: Jochen Mai

Jochen Mai is the founder and editor-in-chief of the career bible. The author of several books lectures at the TH Köln and is a sought-after keynote speaker, coach and consultant.

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