Tips & Tricks: Dismiss an employee decently!

By Corina Petcu-Nan, HR Director la Wingsrom Flying Quality, Mentor in SIM’s Community

Henry is employed, on a fixed-term employment contract, in a well-known company on the domestic market. Recently, a delegate from the HR department called him to tell him, in short, that "from tomorrow his contract will not be extended." 

Such contracts are usually extended several times, but companies practice, as in this case, less orthodox issues when they do not know how to manage layoffs properly.

Like recruitment or hiring, layoffs are an integral part of businesses, whatever their size, and have never been easy to do. That's why when you have to tell someone it's time to follow another path, pay attention to the following steps:

Avoid firing by email. The employee needs feedback, which you need to give face to face, and he needs to know why he was wrong. Maybe even though he was hard-working and strictly implemented everything the others told him, he was not creative, and you want a creative person in that position. If you don't tell him, he won't know where he went wrong. The employee, like the customer, must leave satisfied. The latest studies show that a happy person with your company will share his opinion with a small group of people, while a dissatisfied person will put you in the mouth of the whole town.

Show empathy. It is said that there is no right time or place, but when you consider firing a person, avoid doing it near the holidays or on days when he just received some awful news, and you know it.

Please do not give him negative feedback in front of other colleagues. The world is small. People do not always have the best intentions. When you make a dismissal, try not to justify it in front of everyone around you because what you do not appreciate can be of great value to another company. So it is better to choose a secluded place, where you can confidentially express your or your management's grievances. And remember, when you say three negative things, look for five positive ones to give him self-confidence that he can succeed elsewhere.

Time, a valuable resource. Imagine that dismissal does not have to last five minutes because you have to answer all the questions that may come to the employee's mind about losing his job. He must understand precisely why he needs to move on. Remember that an HR manager changes lives, offers opportunities, but just as easily can cut the wings of a young man who, for example, does not know very well how ready he is to take another step in his career.

Be sympathetic. No one goes through separations quickly. So when you point out a person's flaws, don't expect them to respond with a smile on their face. Please pay attention to the tone you use and try to put yourself in his shoes. What would you like to hear, which will convince you that you fit better in someone else's company?