How To Let Go Of Employees In An Ethical Way While Minimizing Risk

Saturday, December 09, 2023

Are you a founder, executive, or manager who's delayed letting someone go in the past?

Even though deep down you knew in your gut it was the right call?

Trust me, I've felt the same way. Here’s the hiring moto that I live by. Hire slowly and fire quickly.

And here's how I learned this: a few years ago I started a company called Order Solutions that scaled from zero to 250 employees in just 24 months and I was constantly in the thick of hiring and, unfortunately, firing.

From my experiences, here are some actionable lessons for you:

1. Reason for Termination:

Avoid being too specific. From a legal perspective it’s in your best interest to not always state a reason. Sometimes, it's better to just say It's not the right fit for what we’re looking for.

2. Severance Packages:

You don’t need any more enemies. Go beyond what's expected and put together a generous severance package so it will put their mind at ease and give them plenty of time to find a new job. You can have the agreement state they can’t speak negatively publicly about your company or share any trade secrets in exchange for receiving the severance package.

3. Document Everything:

Always have things in writing. Whether it's regular feedback, performance reviews, or concerns raised, keep a clear record.

4. Delegate the Tough Calls:

As your company expands, it's wise to let HR professionals handle terminations. It’s not because you’re scared too but it will provide you with an emotional barrier and reduce potential backlash.

5. Assess and Adapt Your Team:

As Michael Dell says the team that helped you reach one goal might not be the one that helps you hit the next goal. Value your top performers, but be ready to upgrade your team as you set more ambitious goals.

If you want more help with this. I've got a free resource that can help you. I have a free cheat sheet that is tailor-made for founders and managers. Click the link below and get free instant access to dive deeper into this.

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