When to Let Go of an Under Performer

Question:

I have an employee who is just not working out. I know I need to fire her, but I don’t have a replacement to backfill the position.  Should I wait until I find someone before letting her go?

 

 

Answer:
  If someone is performing at such a low level you feel that firing her is your only option then you really can’t wait.  Keeping peoples employed that aren’t working out can undermine the moral of your entire team. Your higher performing employees start to wonder why she is allowed to stay and may start questioning why they are working so hard. That said, make sure you’ve documented the performance issues with specifics.  You need to note exactly what performance you expect and in what timeframe. That way, assuming she failed to perform by the given date, there’ll be no surprises. As to having someone to backfill, I’m sure if you ask your team to pitch in they will be more than happy to help. Make sure you pick up some of the slack yourself.  And going forward, it’s a good idea to develop a pool of candidates that you check in with on a regular basis. That way, you’ll be able to keep the vacancy timeline to a minimum.  

The information and opinion that Cindy and Laura share on this site does not constitute legal advice. You must not rely on the information on this website as an alternative to legal advice from your attorney or other professional legal services provider.