What consequences can managers apply instead of dismissing someone?

Inc.com columnist Alison Green answers questions about workplace and management issues – everything from How to deal with a micromanaging boss How to talk to someone on your team About body odor.

I’m a new manager and I’m thinking about the consequences. When an employee does not meet expectations, you often mention that a manager should clearly explain the possible consequences if the problem is not fixed, until the person is let go and so on. What? Is The consequences before being fired? I want to better understand what kind of tools I have as a manager to impose consequences.

It depends on the situation.

If this is a serious performance issue that must be fixed in the end for the person to be in their role, it will constantly lead you on a path of serious caution about what changes you need to see. The first conversation in that process will be quite informal, but if it doesn’t resolve some of the things in that conversation (with clear feedback), in most cases you will want to move on to a more formal performance plan with a timeline and meeting criteria for the person to understand You need to see specific improvements during that time. (There are exceptions, such as when the employee is so new that there is no point in going through the whole process, or when it is clear that the issues are so significant and the person is unlikely to be able to meet them. )

But there are other situations – I think you are asking about – where the problem is not so serious that you can dismiss the person for it, but it is still a matter of concern. In this case, you can explain to the employee that if they do not solve the X problem, it may affect future performance appraisal, future raising, promotion potential, the type of project they have been assigned and / or what kind of growth. The opportunities they are given. That end will depend on exactly what the problem is; Obviously you don’t want to deny someone the opportunity to improve, but in some cases it’s important to conclude that you would probably invest your limited development resources in other people.

Remember that results should rarely be punitive; I think so The resultNo. Punishment. For example, if someone makes a bad decision about their work, a reasonable consequence may be that you oversee them more closely. It would not be reasonable to deny them one day’s leave as punishment.

Also, sometimes an effective consequence is “we’re going to have a serious conversation about this.” The results don’t always have to be formal, and sometimes the formal consequences can be overwhelming. In many cases – in fact, for the most part – a reasonable consequence is a serious conversation with you about what happened and what you plan to do to avoid it in the future. In the case of a healthy worker, this will often be the result that you have to hold someone accountable and get things back on track. Of course, while this doesn’t solve the problem, you’ll probably want to move on from there – but this is usually the right place to start.

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The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com

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