What To Do With a Bad Employee

corrective action, Termination

Businesses take a big risk when hiring employees of different experiences and personality types, so when the team has a toxic employee, the business and everything related to the business can be in danger.  Even when the bad or toxic employee is known, it can be difficult trying to remold them into an engaged and happy employee so here’s what to do with a bad employee.

What To Do With a Bad Employee

  1. Assess the situation.  Before you can make any judgments on the employee, you need to do some research on the employee’s behavior and work performance.  You’ll want to dig into all the past and current performance metrics, any employee surveys or feedback, and review notes from past meetings. As you start to better understand how the employee turned bad or toxic, check in with HR to get some guidance on what additional intel you’d need to properly understand the situation.
  2. Determine if corrective action is needed.  Once you’ve assessed the situation, you’ll want to figure out if taking corrective action with the employee is an option.  Typically, when you do not have past documentation of any performance or behavioral issues, corrective action with help both you and the business. Disciplining employees by using a corrective action plan can help kickstart the process of trying to rehabilitate the employee.
  3. Check in with HR.  Depending on your organization’s policies and the employee issue, it may be difficult to figure out which course of action to take.  HR is your best resource to help you make the right decisions and can help determine if corrective action or termination is the best course of action.
  4. Openly communicate with the employee.  Once you’ve gone through the first three steps, it’s time to have a conversation with the employee to understand their perspective.  This will help clarify any potential issues and can help you decide if any corrective action should be taken. 
  5. Consider termination.  If everything has been researched, communication has happened between the employee and HR, and the employee continues to be bad or toxic, then firing the employee becomes a real option. Discuss with HR if you’re considering firing the employee so you can ensure the business stays protected if the employee needs to be terminated. 

How to Train Managers on Termination

Termination

As an HR team, you have a tall order balancing between recruiting, talent development, and enforcing company policy.  And while most managers do well in day-to-day management of their employees, when it comes to firing them, they could feel very lost. It’s important to train all managers in tasks and processes that help mitigate risk to the company, especially on terminating employees. 

Training Managers on Employee Termination

  1. The importance of training.  The training helps to protect the business and provide the right tools to ensure the process is standardized and done the same across the company.  If the process is followed correctly and is done the same for every employee that’s fired, then it significantly decreases risk of a wrongful termination lawsuit related to being treated unfairly and creates less confusion amongst managers about what the right process is.
  2. The most important points to focus on.  There are a handful of topics that managers need to understand before terminations can happen. 
    • Managers need to have a good understanding of documentation and what the corrective action process is.  This helps ensure they understand there’s a whole set of steps to follow before even considering terminating an employee.
    • Managers also need to be able to objectively articulate why the employee is to be terminated.  There are main categories of reasons, with the basics including unsatisfactory performance, a change in organizational structure, and direct misconduct. They need to understand if they even have the authority to fire an employee.
    • The process and tools used to get a termination approved. It’s helpful to walk managers through an example case scenario to ensure they understand.
    • How to conduct a termination meeting is vital to ensure the manager does not say anything that could endanger the company.  Make sure to avoid small talk, remain calm, and try to direct the meeting in an organized manner to avoid any misleading communication. 
  3. Have reference guides available.  Managers just learned a lot of new information. It’s important to have the information used in the training available and easily accessible. Depending on the employees they’re responsible for, the need to terminate an employee could happen their first month or after their first year.
  4. Don’t be afraid to enforce the rules.  Managers represent the company and are the first line of defense against any possible employee issues that can pose a risk to the business. If a manager is not following the policy the HR team has set forth, they’ll need corrective action, or else they may not be fit to be a manager with direct reports. At the end of the day, the business needs to be protected before it can do anything else (especially grow revenue).

Bambee gives Managers and HR Teams the right tools to fire an employee the right way without worry about any additional training. Best-practice guides and tips are available at every step to ensure each Manager follows the same process the right way every time. Find out more at www.bambee.com.

-The Bambee Team

What is a Wrongful Termination Lawsuit?

Termination

Firing an employee is not something that any HR team or business owner enjoys doing, but sometimes it is necessary to fire an employee in order to build the company and focus on the future.  However, there is always the risk of a lawsuit for wrongful termination.  The process of a wrongful termination lawsuit can be a nightmare for any business.

Wrongful Termination Lawsuits

  1. The wrongful termination.  Once an employee is terminated, they can sue for any number of reasons. For example,  you can be sued for implying to your former employee that he or she will not be fired; discrimination related to race, ethnicity, religion, age, sexual orientation, or for any disability; retaliation of the employee’s rights and whistleblowing.  Every state has different rules, which may be different from federal rules. 
  2. Are you at risk?  One of the first things you need to ask yourself should be “Is my business or organization at risk for wrongful termination lawsuit?”  Before you try and answer, there are some things you need to know.  You can be sued for a number of reasons, including violating anti-discrimination laws, sexual harassment, not following through on written or oral agreements, or breaking labor laws.  There are a number of ways a company can be sued after firing an employee, so it’s important to think through the firing carefully and consult with a lawyer just in case.
  3. They’re costly.  The average cost to fight a wrongful termination lawsuit is $250,000, and there are a number of additional costs involved with firing and rehiring a replacement.   In addition, if your company is deemed liable or found to have violated any labor law, then you can most certainly bet that you will pay much more.

  4. What all can the fired employee be compensated for?  This can be something that varies from case to case.  You could be accountable for paying any benefits lost, possible pay compensation, punitive costs, emotional distress, and most importantly, the fees it took to hire the lawyer.  It is wise for you (the owner) or any HR team to weight the benefits when it comes to firing an employee.
  5. They’re time-intensive.  If you thought your 10 hour day the other week was long, then brace yourself; the wrongful termination lawsuit process will be lengthy.  Why is this?  Your former employee obviously noticed something in your firing process that indicated that you may have done something incorrectly.  This means you will need to gather all documentation and start fine tuning any piece of documentation to support your firing decision.  Time spent on this process is money lost.
  6. Settlement costs are high. One out of ten wrongful termination lawsuits end in million dollar settlements. For the rest, the average costs are $40,000 to settle a wrongful termination case. This is just the settlement money paid to the plaintiff, which is in addition to costs related to defending against the lawsuit.
  7. How could you lose?  There are various ways in which you can lose a wrongful termination lawsuit and it all comes down to your documentation.  As a business owner or HR team, it is vital that everything is documented accurately and effectively so that risk to the business is low. Unsure of how to document? See which corrective action process is right for your business.

Bambee helps make sure your business is protected from wrongful termination lawsuits by helping your company’s managers give you the documentation and insight you need about employee performance and behavior. Find out more at www.bambee.com.

-The Bambee Team

Making the Most of an Exit Interview

Termination

wAn exit interview helps ensure the exiting employee, whether voluntarily leaving or not, leaves with as positive a view of the company as possible by sharing information with HR they may have not been able to share while employed. The information shared during the exit interview is especially important if there’s anything happening that can increase risk to the business.  

It is highly recommended that the exit interview is conducted by a member of the HR team or at the least, a neutral party in the manager to employee relationship. This will help give the employee a platform to give honest feedback. Here are a few of the most commonly asked exit interview questions for employees voluntarily leaving:

  • Is there any feedback you’d like to provide about your manager?
  • What are your thoughts about how you were treated by your supervisor and co-workers?
  • Do you believe that your work was recognized and appreciated?
  • What is the morale of your co-workers like?
  • What steps would you take to make this company a better place to work?

And here are a few of the most commonly asked exit interview questions for employees being terminated:

  • Is there any feedback you’d like to provide about your manager?
  • Is there any feedback you’d like to provide about the company? 
  • Is there anything you’d like to share regarding your time here at the company?

Here are a list of items or behavior we advise against during an exit interview:

  • Don’t use slanderous or emotional language
  • Don’t agree or disagree with the individual if he says negative things about other people or parts of the business
  • Don’t admit fault or place blame on an individual or team
  • Don’t respond at length and instead, keep responses to a minimum and let the exiting employee speak

Exit interviews are an opportunity to improve working conditions within your company and can also give you insight to any possible organizational issues. An employee that quits or is fired can hurt your business and the morale of the team. Exit interviews help make sure you can learn as much as you can in order to mitigate any possible problems before they get out of control.

Bambee helps HR teams get ahead of any potential issues by giving Managers the freedom to record incidents of any kinds long before any corrective action is needed. 

Head over to www.bambee.com to see how Bambee gives HR and Managers the right tools to get ahead of potential issues.

-The Bambee Team

How to Fire an Employee

Termination

Firing (aka terminating) an employee is not always something that every manager plans for; however, there comes a time when an employee needs to be let go.  When that time comes, there are certain aspects that every manager needs to consider prior to making the termination happen.  Listed below are seven effective methods for terminating an employee the right way.

How to Fire an Employee

  1. Review your company policy and get approval by HR.  Regardless of the reason that your employee is being let go, you need to review your company policy first so you’re not putting the business at risk for a wrongful termination lawsuit.  Gather all required documentation, evidence to support your reason for termination, and meet with HR for their approval. They’ll have a long list of to-do items before you can terminate the employee, and following those rules will make sure the business is protected.  HR will, at the very least, help: 
    1. Decide how much of a risk this employee is to the business if they’re terminated
    2. You follow local, state, and federal regulations related to employee termination
    3. Make sure the termination is fair to the employee and business
  2. Prepare for the exit meeting.  The process of terminating an employee isn’t as simple as just stating “you’re fired.”  Just as you would do when interviewing a candidate for hiring, you want to make sure to have a plan for delivering the news to the employees, including all the required paperwork and notifications if they’re eligible for COBRA or unemployment. 
  3. Keep the exit meeting brief and professional.  The transition is already awkward and the news to the employee may cause many different emotions to surface, which makes saying the right thing so crucial.  It is very helpful to prepare a statement, have it reviewed by HR, and then practice it before the actual delivery. 
  4. Have HR in the exit meeting.  Given that emotions are running strong, it’s very important to have a neutral party within the company to either run the meeting or help guide it. HR will help make sure the employee gets everything they need as required by federal regulation before they exit the building.
  5. Alert the right departments about the termination.  The final paycheck (including any unused time-off days or sick days) is required at the termination meeting so accounting will need to be notified before then. They’ll also need to deactivate them from payroll going forward. IT and Operations will also need to be notified in order to deactivate any online accounts and recuperate any company-owned belongings like key cards and id badges. 
  6. Notify your team and their peers.  After the exit, your team and the employees the now ex-employee worked with could be confused. Hold a meeting to inform the employees of the news and get ahead of any potential issues by being objective and brief about why the employee was fired and how this will benefit the company in the long-run.

Firing an employee the right way can be confusing and difficult, but Bambee helps make terminations straightforward and easy. 

Head over to www.bambee.com to see how we give HR and Managers the right tools when it’s time to terminate an employee.

-The Bambee Team

 

How to Beat a Performance Improvement Plan

corrective action

While some may think being placed on a Performance Improvement Plan as something of a career death sentence, being placed on one is the best opportunity to reset expectations about your work performance so you can forge a new path in growth for your own job and career.  Let’s take a look at how to beat the performance improvement plan.

How to Beat a Performance Improvement Plan

  1. Get out of your comfort zone.  Being placed on a Performance Improvement Plan means the business is taking your case seriously, so you should also take it seriously.  This may take you out of your comfort zone, but it’s in your best interest to communicate with your manager to figure out the resources you need to reach the goals given to you and list out the reasons why you weren’t able to hit the goals previously. 
  2. Stay focused.  Your manager or the company’s HR team may have suggested strategies to help you achieve the agreed-upon goals. Whether or not you received them, it’s up to you to figure out additional strategies and how to execute them. You only have a small window of time to get it right, so it’s important to stay focused on achieving your specific goals.  
  3. Communicate often.  It would be unwise to simply keep doing what you have been in the past and hope things will work out. Your manager should have set up some follow-up dates to check in with you. If not, be proactive and set up those follow-up dates yourself. It’s best to communicate any issues you’re having earlier on so you can have a better chance at achieving your goals. 
  4. Seek help.  Help can come from anyone, whether it’s your current network of relationships or outside of it.  Although every Performance Improvement Plan is different, the goals you need to achieve will help you figure out who you can leverage to increase your chances of succeeding.  
  5. Be confident.  It can feel like you’re constantly under the microscope and everything is on the line. But always keep in mind that it’s you who has the power to decide if you’re going to give it your best or not. There are other people on the same team who are hitting their goals and assuming you’re receiving all the same resources and have a similar skillset, you should be able to hit those goals as well. 

Bambee helps give HR and Managers the right tools to allow their Employees to be successful during a Performance Improvement Plan. 

Head over to www.bambee.com to see how we give HR and Managers the right tools for successful Performance Improvement Plans or share Bambee with your favorite HR person and Manager.

-The Bambee Team

The Real Truth about Performance Improvement Plans

corrective action

There has been some misconception about what a performance improvement plan is and what it represents, especially for employees on the receiving end. Forbes even goes out of their way to have you thinking that these plans are only set in place to let you go. 

A Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) is simply a way for you and your manager to come up with an action-oriented process for your success.  It gives you and employees like you a real shot at improvement since it requires your manager to give you additional resources to succeed, including more direct, face-time with your manager. 

Performance Improvement Plans Work When You Believe They’ll Work

  • Know the Path is Clear.  You’ve been given the road map for success and all you have to do is deliver the quality results.  One little-known fact about a Performance Improvement Plan is that businesses also hold managers accountable during the Plan. Each termination increases risk to the business so it’s in the company’s benefit to create a level playing field for employees. Even though your manager has a cleared a path for you, it’s possible you still may stumble.

  • Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help.  This is a highly underrated option for many individuals so once you’ve agreed to the plan, don’t be afraid to get help from your fellow co-workers and your manager as well.  Feel like you can’t ask for help? Now is the time to voice that concern, either verbally or by email, to your manager or HR.

  • Don’t Stop Believing.  There’s no need to sugarcoat this – Performance Improvement Plans have a bad reputation.  However, they exist to help employees and protect the business.  Each company uses them differently, but it’s important that you stay positive and treat it as a learning experience. 

Bambee gives HR, Managers, and Employees the clarity and transparency needed for a successful Performance Improvement Plan. 

Head over to www.bambee.com to see in detail how we help make clarity and transparency happen or share Bambee with your favorite HR person.

-The Bambee Team