GB Ep 9: When You Should Fire Employees

Welcome to another episode of Growth Bites. Today we’re talking about when you should fire employees. It’s an unpleasant subject, but one that’s important to address if you’re going to run a company or work in a management role.

  • Let me start by saying I’m not an HR expert, and you should probably start by asking a rep about legalities and get advice. [00:20]
  • I’ve made mistakes by reprimanding and yelling at people to the point it’s disrespectful. If you’re trying to help people improve and they make repeated mistakes or don’t care, you need to let them go. [00:42]
  • You never need to get to the point you need to yell at someone. [01:12]
  • I’ve always regretted yelling at employees and never gotten anything back from it. [01:33]
  • It takes too long to find someone new. You need to let them go immediately instead of lingering and letting them drain your culture and work ethic. [01:48]
  • A bad employee is hurting your company morale. [02:25]
  • Don’t give people too many chances to improve. From what I’ve seen, “three strikes and you’re out” doesn’t work. It’s a waste of time. [02:36]
  • The first time I fired someone, I was nervous and had to let him go on Skype. We ended up having a full-blown conversation, and I had to fire him and caught him off guard. [03:13]
  • Do it quickly and let them know it’s their last day. Giving a lot of explanations makes it emotional and leads to confrontation. It’s actually better to be vague or tell them it’s performance. Don’t dive too deep. [04:05]
  • Jason Lemkin wrote a good piece on firing a crummy employee. [04:48]
  • Part of building a business is having a template to fire people. [05:15]
  • My template is direct, I tell them it’s their last day, walk them out and let them know we can wrap up any loose ends on email or a call and get them paid. [05:25]
  • Don’t let the people you fire linger and talk to everyone because it can be toxic. [05:53]

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