Firing people can be difficult, but at times necessary. Generally, termination is the last straw in a long, drawn-out process. After all, companies view their employees as investments and spend a significant amount of resources to help ensure success. But, occasions do arise when the initial benefits gained by an individual’s employment are outweighed by a toxic office environment. If left to fester, it could cripple an organization.
StaffScapes, a Denver human resources solutions center, helps businesses elevate their internal practices to foster an environment that’s beneficial to all participants. This includes navigating the difficult decision to fire someone.
Managers who have little experience in this realm may choose to avoid the option altogether, especially if doubt clouds their judgment. However, rest assured, there are clear indicators to help reach a final decision.
In this article, StaffScapes reviews five clear signs that it’s the best time to fire an employee.
1. Poor Time Management
Modern work environments often adopt a flexible start time to help employees balance their personal life, such as raising a family or a rigorous daily commute. In turn, employees tend to capitalize on their time at the office, and thus productivity surges. Nonetheless, some may choose to take advantage of the company’s leniency.
If a person is consistently tardy without a proper excuse or communication, it is a sign of disrespect to both the company and especially other staff members. Furthermore, this type of behavior could lead to further time infractions like extended lunch breaks and early leave. Habitual lateness, if not addressed, could also be seen as preferential treatment.
Managers should set clear expectations and issue warnings to help guide staff back on track, but if poor time management persists, it might be time to fire the employee, since the work lifestyle may not be a fit.
2. Disregard For Company Policy
Company policies establish rules, boundaries, and ideal practices to create a safe and welcoming work environment. Most working adults adhere to these behavioral guidelines, but the occasional misstep does happen. Enter human resources. Depending on the type of infraction, a single discussion may rectify the issue. More serious violations or repeat offenders that are in direct conflict with the company’s values may necessitate additional penalties.
Disruptive behavior that jeopardizes the well-being and security of other employees are red flags that indicate that it might be time to let someone go.
3. Mediocre Performance
An employee who struggles to perform in their role from the start is either a wrong fit for the job or the company as a whole — determining which depends on the employee’s attitude towards criticism and their motivation to grow. Individuals who occasionally fumble but are eager to cooperate, adapt, and put in extra work to boost their productivity could thrive in a new position. Those who shut down from constructive feedback and refuse to work with management on a performance review plan are likely better off transitioning to a new company.
4. Cultural Mismatch
Credentials alone don’t equal success in the workplace. Culture is set from the top down, and every member of a business is an ambassador charged with showcasing the best of themselves. Employees flaunting behavior that doesn’t align with a company’s values creates rifts in and outside of the office.
To protect the brand’s integrity, you need to ensure the undesirable behavior does not take root, which could mean it’s the best time to fire an employee who is a cultural mismatch.
5. Drama Instigator
Drama is the culprit of disturbances in all aspects of life. But considering full-time employees spend 40 hours a week in an office setting surrounded by the same people, gossip and the cacophony that follows can cause irreversible damage to morale. In a perfect world, every employee would be excited to go into work each day, but we’re only human. That being said, accomplishing tasks on schedule and growing revenue are hard enough without employees who thrive on instigating turmoil amongst their co-workers for their amusement.
Such people are toxic to the work environment, and regardless of performance, are not worth sacrificing an emotionally stable workplace.
Before you determine if it’s the best time to fire an employee, it’s vital to consult your human resources team to ensure regulations and laws are met. Terminating an employee is not a clear-cut procedure, but may become unavoidable. With proper observation and reflection, it is possible to make the right call with confidence and clarity.
As a leading expert Professional Employer Organization (PEO) focusing on HR compliance, policies, and best practices, StaffScapes helps businesses in the Metro-North area and throughout Colorado, maximize their team members’ performance. StaffScapes develops an individualized solution for every partner company’s unique needs. StaffScapes works with all types and sizes of businesses throughout Colorado in assisting their mission by taking responsibility for HR compliance and allowing their partners to focus on their core mission.
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