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Dealing with Employee Terminations

Terminating an employee from the job is a tough task for the employer. The manager who has been entrusted with the task of terminating the employee must keep vigil over every action taken and every word spoken by him. A wrong move by the manager can turn out to be expensive for the company.

The cause for the termination must be irrefutable and well defined. It must be based on actual instances which are derogatory to the fellow beings or the company, and must not be based on rumours. Every company will have a manual of people practices which explains explicitly the various causes for which the company can terminate the employees, and the time given to the employee to quit the organisation. Violation of non-disclosure agreement, sexual harassment, continuous poor performance, etc can be some of the reasons for the termination of the employee. Before initiating any measures, the manager has to review the employment contract for its various clauses.

Employees are given the opportunity to correct themselves depending on the degree of offense committed. In cases where poor performance is the cause for termination, the employee is given opportunity to correct his mistake and become more productive. But where the gravity of the situation is high, he is not given the time to rectify his mistakes as it can turn out to be expensive to the company. The opportunity to rehabilitate is not provided as the manager might be forced to keep vigil on the movements of the employee which might impact the performance of other co-workers. Higher the impact on the customer relationship, the dangerous it is to continue the employment.

The manager must call upon a one-to-one meeting with the employee and inform him of the decision to terminate his employment. The supervisor has to ensure that the details of termination is kept away from others and should not leak the news of the termination unless and otherwise performed by the guilty. The manager has to keep proper documentation of the cause and measures undertaken for the termination, to fight against any litigation that might be filed by the guilty. The manager must give the employee the occasion to give vent to his feelings on coming to know about the termination. He should keep a cool head and should remain honest and professional during the conversation. In certain cases, where the cause of termination is bad performance, the manager must point out the reasons for the employee’s failure and highlight his strengths. The employee should be informed of the benefits that he is liable to attain on the termination of the contract. If possible, the meeting should be concluded with a hand shake, amicably.

Once the employee has been made known of the breakage in the employment contract, the manager has to take measures to attain the individual’s password to his system, keys, identity card, and other related material.

Termination of a contract is a highly sensitive issue as the failure to do so can adversely hit the performance of the co-workers, resulting in customer dissatisfaction. Similarly, improper proceedings might result in an expensive litigation to the company. Thus, in short, employee termination must be done with great care and caution.

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