Firing an employee is stressful for all parties – not just for the employee losing a job. No matter how well you’ve communicated about performance problems with the employee, almost no one believes that they will actually get fired.
Employees convince themselves that they won’t get fired: they think that you like them; they think you know that they are a nice person, or you recognize that they’ve been “trying hard.” You may. But, none of your feelings matter when the employee is not performing their job. Firing an employee may take you awhile. But, these are the top 10 don’ts when you do fire an employee.
1. Don’t fire an employee unless you are meeting face-to-face
2. Don’t fire an employee without warning
3. Don’t fire an employee without a witness
4. Don’t supply lengthy rationale and examples for why you are firing the employee
5. Don’t let the employee believe that the decision is not final
6. Don’t allow the employee to leave with company property in his possession
7. Don’t allow the former employee to access his work area or coworkers
8. Don’t allow the employee to access information systems
9. Don’t end the meeting on a low note
10. Don’t fire an employee without a checklist in hand
From: Susan M. Heathfield, About.com Guide