10 Steps to an Effective Termination

How to be fair and transparent when you have to fire an employee

By Elisabeth Greenbaum Kasson June 1, 2016
  • ​​Be transparent about your company’s termination policies.
  • Begin the documentation process as soon as you notice a pattern of negative performance or behavior. Encourage management to avoid charged language and to stick to what’s observable.
  • Determine if any protected factors pose a particular risk if the employee were to be terminated.Work with management to rapidly reach a consensus on whether and when a person should be terminated.
  • Create a time frame for termination that aligns with your company policy.
  • Schedule the last meeting and prepare any paperwork, including an explanation of benefits and the final paycheck.
  • Ask the employee’s manager lead the final conversation, which should be brief and to the point. HR should provide paperwork and logistical support.
  • Make sure that, before the employee walks out the door, his electronic and physical access to the workplace is disconnected.
  • Provide the employee with options for clearing her workspace outside of normal business hours.
  • Treat everyone involved with dignity and respect.


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