Decisive Firing

Underperformance
Firing
Coaching / Training / Mentorship

16 May, 2018

Edwin Chau talks about the importance of being decisive when determining whether or not to fire someone.

Problem

One of the people who reported to one of my reports was an average performer. However, we needed to work out whether he was a net positive and whether he was bringing more to the table than he was taking away in terms of time from other people.

Actions taken

We started out by putting him on a performance improvement plan. We wanted to be able to make a quick decision in terms of how confident we were that after the performance improvement plan he would be able to continue with sustained growth. While he made some good changes at first during the improvement plan, they leveled off. Because of this, it was clear we needed to let him go.

Lessons learned

The biggest thing I have learned about firing is that it's important to find a balance between being hopeful and providing opportunities to help people succeed, and not letting underperformance drag out for too long. Make sure you have good supporting evidence, but when you realize you need to fire someone, be decisive about it.


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