Poor performance in an employee may arise for a number of different reasons. But when an employee’s performance is obviously unacceptable and everyone knows it, it can be easier to take action, especially if the person has had every opportunity to improve.
Before terminating employment, first consider why you are not getting the results that you and the organization desire. In times of change, is your employee having difficulty adopting new values, skills, relationships or thinking? Is the employee lacking the training? Do they know what is expected of them or perhaps there is a non-work related issue impeding performance. If they are simply not suited for the job, you should make every effort to find alternative work for the person. At the end of the day if you still cannot, then you must let them go – but do so with humility and compassion.
It may seem like days, weeks, maybe even months wasted on coaching, consulting, and counseling of these poor performers. How frustrating. Yet, when someone is let go for poor performance, many organizations overlook hidden costs including lost time, waning productivity, a tarnished reputation, devastated employee morale, diminished customer loyalty, and potential legal action, all of which can far outweigh the usual cost-savings predicted. There are often ways you can plan ahead for a smoother termination and improve the subsequent discussions and actions.
Offering Career Transition Services – or outplacement services – to poor performers can significantly reduce your risk, control your costs and secure your reputation for the future. Here are a few reasons to offer outplacement services to your poor performers:
- Sustain the morale of and demonstrate your commitment to retaining employees
- Manage former employee’s perception of the company
- Maintain the company’s reputation in the community and with customers
- Boost employee referrals from former employees familiar with the corporate culture
- Mediate new partnerships and future sales opportunities with former employees that remain with the industry
- Reduce the potential for lawsuits or EEO actions
- Reduce unemployment costs from the long-term unemployed.
You should always discuss these concerns and issues with your employment lawyer. Letting someone go is never easy. Offering outplacement services can put your mind at ease that the employee will be in good hands, supported and focused on the future in a difficult time.
What are your thoughts about offering outplacement to poor performers? Do you always include it in your severance package?
If you need an expert in providing compassionate outplacement services, contact OI Global Partners today!