Submitted by wrysmaisle on
I will be sacking a long term employee (13 years) for non-performance and would like ideas on what/how to tell the remaining employees what has happened.
The company is small (15 employees) so it's a very visible thing.
Peanut butter rule applies.
What do you want them to know?
What to tell them depends on what reaction you want them to have. If you wanted it to serve as a warning to others, you might consider telling people that Cherie was fired for failing to perform to standards. Personally, I'd stick with a generic "Cherie is moving on to a new position at another firm, and I wish her the best of luck", because I'm comfortable with my decision and can manage the performance of the rest of my team separately.
The reason the employee is
The reason the employee is leaving is between you and the employee. I would merely say the employee is moving on as Matt suggested. Anything else would be breaching a confidence. Any warnings you want to give should be done as feedback, unless you want to warn all 14 other people that they're all on notice that they will be sacked in short order unless they improve.
That last reminds me of the old cartoon, caption alone is sufficient: "The beatings will continue until morale improves."
There a good chance they
There a good chance they will say "Finally - what took you so long....".
Seek Advice Elsewhere
I understand you work for a small organization so you don't have a large HR department. But is there one person who wears the HR hat? What is that person's advice. Does your org have an HR consultant on call? if not, it should have. My wife works for a firm where the vendor who processes their payroll also provides impartial advice and training on HR topics.
Employment law is tricky and varies from country to country and in the US sometimes from state to state. The people in this forum are not likely well versed in the laws that affect you.
I have had an experience similar to what George describes. My team's morale actually improved as did their respect for me once I demonstrated the courage to fire someone for nonperformance.
Thanks for the thoughts.
Not a warning per se...
I think the "Just moving on" option seems the best.
Unfortunately (or fortunately ...) I'm the HR person. It's a case of in the land of the blind :-) I have prior experience with sackings but of course this is just a slightly different situation and so can't apply that experience here. The HR consultant on call is a great idea - I've not had to call on such expertise before but I think I'll organise that for next time.
... and I reckon George will be right on the money!