When you hear a story about someone getting fired or laid off during the holiday season, you automatically think of the employer as a being a big old Scrooge.
But there’s always a holiday, birthday, long weekend, or some other reason that stops you from making the termination happen. Does waiting until after the holidays really do anyone any good?
So here’s our tips on firing someone during the holidays:
- Firing someone should never come as a surprise to anyone, especially the person that’s being let go. Make sure you’ve done everything you can to set this person up to improve their performance.
- Before you initiate the conversation, ask yourself this list of questions before you make the call:
- Why are you firing this person?
- Have you given clear feedback and laid out the expectations on what it means if they do or don’t change their performance?
- Has your employee been given opportunities to ask for help or get clarification on what the situation means?
- Have you put them on a performance improvement plan?
- Have you summarized any of these conversations in writing that both parties have seen?
- Don’t make the termination about you. The person being fired is likely not going to be ecstatic about it – and they are the ones who have the face the consequences of the termination, not you. You get to keep your job, they don’t. Consider that while this may be “hard for you to do given the time of year” – it may in fact be harder for them.
- Consider the other party affected: the employees that are staying. Employee morale is a fun one during the holidays. Some offices really get into the spirit, for others it’s a time of more work and tighter deadlines, and others feel a sense of forced fun when in actuality their day-to-day environment is rather toxic or fake. Do a pulse check with your team before they head out on vacation to see how they are feeling.
- It will always feel like a bad time to fire someone. Remember, these are people not numbers. Treat them with open conversations about why the decisions have been made and be as transparent as you can.
People matter most. Regardless of the season.
Meet Steph. She is a force. She is a firecracker. She is a lover of love.