Most of your staff performs well and contributes to the company’s success. There may come a time when you must terminate an employee for a valid reason.
The Harvard Business Review offers tips for terminating employees the right way. Learn how to reduce the chances of facing a wrongful termination suit and part ways with grace.
Have a plan
Consider the right day and time for the meeting to happen. Terminating the person early in the week gives her or him time to look for a new job ASAP. Waiting until Friday afternoon could create less of a disruption. Think about what works most favorably for your company.
Have a valid reason
To better avoid a wrongful termination claim, ensure you have a legal, protected reason for ending your professional relationship. Look at the scenario from various angles to anticipate ways the person could twist your words.
Have a script
To save time, develop a script for what you want to say. Get straight to the point with the bad news, and avoid saying you know how the person feels. Give the individual room to speak, so you know the direction in which to move the conversation. Let the employee know what to expect regarding severance/final pay, benefits, unemployment benefits, references and unused vacation time.
Have a meeting with HR
If you never fired an employee, touch bases with HR. You do not want to risk saying or doing something that may open you to legal action.
You may hate terminating employees, but you must protect your company. No matter how you feel about the matter, understand which moves serve you and your staff most favorably.