Tips for Firing an Employee

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Firing someone is never fun, but sometimes it is essential. If you’re looking for tips for firing an employee, you should keep in mind that there are some do’s and don’ts for firing an employee. If handled improperly, firing an employee can be damaging to your company. But when a termination is handled appropriately and respectfully, you can minimize tensions and maintain a healthy professional environment.

When letting a person go, you’ll want to be mindful of several factors. Here are the steps you’ll need to take when firing an employee.

First, make sure it is really the right decision.

While you certainly shouldn’t let the decision linger on for weeks or months, you should take some time to consider if firing is really necessary. Is the employee aware of their shortcomings? Have they been properly warned and given tools to help them succeed? Have they committed a termination-worthy offense based on your company’s standards?

Then, get the process started.

Once you decide it is necessary to fire them, you’ll want to act swiftly. You don’t want their actions to cause any further damage to your business. It’s better for everyone involved if you can handle the situation sooner rather than later.

Make sure to have it in writing.

A termination must always be written out, whether delivered in print form or in email form. You need to include the facts: why they are being fired and what you have done to address the performance or behavior in the past. The reason for firing should line up with your company standards. This letter should include the effective date of the termination, as well. It’s often a good idea to get the paperwork done before you actually notify the person of their termination.

Deliver the news in person (or over the phone.)

Even though you are typing out a termination notice, it’s best to deliver the news in person before giving them the written letter. Don’t just email them a termination notice, text them, or send a letter to their office. Also, it’s best to have more than one person present for the meeting or the phone call. If you have an HR team, it should be one of them. Have the person’s termination letter and possibly their final paycheck ready so you can deliver these things after the notification.

Allow questions, but don’t let it turn into an argument.

Getting fired can be very emotional. It’s a good idea to respect the employee being terminated by allowing them to ask questions. However, if they try to argue, you should simply state that the decision has been made and it’s final. You can acknowledge the difficulty of the situation and remain sympathetic while still standing firm in the decision. If there is a chance the person may resist and you have security people on the premises, you may want one of them to be on standby.

It’s natural to feel bad about firing someone, but it’s also an essential part of business sometimes. When you have a straightforward firing process, you can make it less stressful for everyone involved. At Hiring Team, we’re here to help you develop hiring and HR solutions tailored to your business’s needs to help you find quality long term candidates.

Karyn Moyer

Karyn Moyer

Karyn Moyer is the Marketing Manager at AgHires. Karyn enjoys learning and discovering new ways to help clients to reach their goals. Hiring Team takes the guesswork and frustration out of the hiring process. Your on-demand Hiring Team will cut down your time spent hiring up to 70%.