If a wrongful dismissal or termination is not managed properly, it can be an extremely serious risk of liability for any organization. Lack of proper documentation or contradictory documentation, can cause retaliation and boost further issues.
Every organization has their own set of methods to deal with a wrongful dismissal but there are some basic, key elements that must be kept in mind while managing it. Before you take the final call for termination, it is important to consider a few things and re-evaluate everything.
1. Check in with your feelings
Never call for a dismissal in the heat of the moment. Take your time and discuss the scenario with your human resource department. Managing the employees’ emotions in the corporate environment is one of the services a great HR department will offer you. There are a lot of legal implications that have to be considered before a termination, thus, don’t make a decision in haste and in emotions.
2. Consider your options to avoid the risk of engaging in a wrongful dismissal
Investigate the entire matter deeply and look into all the options available. Do you have options of warning or suspension available? You must have the essential evidence that is required to call for termination. The employee must be given a set time period to improve or it might be termed wrongful dismissal.
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3. Review the documentation
The documentation must portray a valid reason for the termination. For instance, if you are firing an employee for poor performance, but all the documentation states his/her performance as positive, it will be stated as wrongful dismissal. You will require evidence for the employee’s poor performance. There are cases where you might want to boost the employee’s morale especially if they are going through a difficult time that is having a negative impact on their work.
4. Consult with HR to avoid a wrongful dismissal
HR will state all the reasons why termination might not be good at the given time. For instance, if an employee just filed for pregnancy leave as she acknowledged her pregnancy and you decide to terminate her, it will appear to be pregnancy termination. If that’s the case, you are definitely going to be sued. There’s a whole lot of things you can do to prevent being sued by your employees.
5. Practice your speech
A termination meeting is very crucial and before it is held, you must practice what you should say. Termination can be very uncomfortable and thus, it must be done respectfully. It is important to practice whatever you have to say. Consult your speech with HR too. They will give you feedback on your speech and whether it is good enough or requires some changes.
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6. Stay firm on the message when terminating a job appointment
If you have decided on the dismissal, make sure that you stay firm on it. Yes, you have to be compassionate about the termination and be kind while you deliver the news. However, never apologise for it. You might consider easing the surrounding by stating the qualities of the employee. Don’t complicate the process. That’s humble leadership at work right there.
Wrongful dismissal can cause several complications. Thus, it is important to consider all the things before you terminate an employee. A wrong decision can lead to destroying the reputation of your organization and is best to avoid. Thus check in with your emotions and never make a decision in a haste. Talk with your HR and make sure that the news is delivered professionally but with compassion.