What You Should Know About Firing Office Staff

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A Guideline For Progressive Disciplinary Action

“It’s always best to follow your written termination policies,” says Homisak. She suggests that your practice’s employee manual or handbook section regarding disciplinary action follow a progressive discipline course similar to what is outlined below.

• Employee counseling or reprimand
• Written reprimand
• Written warnings
• Day off without pay for reflection on the problem
• Discharge

Stephanie Wasek, Special Projects Editor

   Following prescribed steps makes the experience psychologically easier for the person doing the firing, says Dr. Werber, because it lets him or her build his or her own expectations of what is to come.

   Moving forward, exit interviews can “be very revealing about the work experience itself and, if agreeable with the terminated employee,” it might be helpful to conduct, suggests Homisak. In addition, if you have had to fire an employee, it is a reminder to look at your hiring practices, according to Dr. Werber.

    “It all goes back to listening and being involved in hiring,” he says. “Preventive care is always better than a surgical excision.”

   For further reading, see “When You Have To Fire An Employee” in the July 2002 issue of Podiatry Today.

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