Most of us want to give people a chance if their performance is below par–especially in these economic times. We have empathy when it comes to affecting the livelihood of those that we need to terminate–knowing the market while “heating up” your “pulling the trigger” may impact their ability to provide for their family. I have been in this position many times over the years and always took this responsibility very seriously.
I am a big believer in making sure people know where they stand when it comes to performance. Transparency is the order of the day–so no need to give false hope if you know they are not going to make it. I, in my former career, like many always tried to give an employee plenty of rope but also multiple warnings and feedback, so when the big day finally arrives it shouldn’t be a surprise. Others prefer to delay the inevitable based on their management style and preference to avoid conflict.
You are much better off dealing with a termination sooner rather than later for a variety of reasons, including;
• The non-performer is likely holding back your team
• Every employee knows they are a non-performer and that you are not dealing with it as their leader
• You imply that mediocrity is tolerated by your inaction
• Productivity is down because others are doing the work of the non-performer in addition to their own duties
• Morale is impacted because of your delay tactics
• Your leadership is challenged when you procrastinate
Dealing with non-performers sooner rather than later is the right way to build a world class team. Make room for impact players who can help you move the needle in your organization. The sooner the better!