One of the most challenging conversations for any leader can be the one ending employment. If you are a manager of people, it comes with the territory. While a termination conversation is never pleasant, with proper planning, you can minimize detractors and deliver your message in a way that maintains the dignity and respect for the individual losing their job.
This week I share 10 Mistakes Leaders Make When Terminating Employment and how avoiding these mistakes will help you to minimize embarrassment, demonstrate respect for the employee and limit safety concerns to your workforce.
PLUS, don’t miss this week’s Take Action Challenge and implement this week’s coaching tips. Also in the Show Notes you will find the all suggestions from Curtis Partridge of Lotus Management Services on how to handle the technology pieces of any termination.
Do you manage people? If so, get tools and strategies you need to take the fear out of feedback with my book You Have to Say the Words: An Integrity-Based Approach for Tackling Tough Conversations and Maximizing Performance. You can find the paperback or digital version at Amazon, Barnes & Noble or your local book seller.
So enjoy this week’s episode of The Nimble Leader show. I appreciate you listening and I hope you tune in next week!
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TAKE ACTION CHALLENGE:
To help you stay nimble, here is this week’s Take Action Challenge. Take these 3 actions steps this week.
- Review your process for tracking what company equipment is issued to each employee so that you know specifically what you need to retrieve if they leave your company. Refer to the Best Practices from the Lotus Management Team in the show notes to help you identify gaps in your processes.
- Evaluate your company communications as it relates to employees who are leaving. Do you have a standard communication format that protects individual privacy while effectively communicating changes on the team? If you have not been consistent, start going forward from today with a common format.
- Take this opportunity to evaluate your workplace security practices and identify any shortfalls. Discuss with the management team how you would handle any threats or potentially volatile individuals. Every industry has their own unique concerns. Working in the restaurant industry, I learned an important lesson. Chefs often have their own personal set of knives, so don’t let them bring them to a termination meeting.
In this podcast I shared some great advice from Curtis Partridge with Lotus Management Services for how to handle the technology part of any termination. You can reach them at www.lotusmserv.com.
Releasing an employee requires a lot of activity by the Information Technology Department. Best practice is for the Human Resources Department to coordinate the schedule of events in advance. This will allow the IT Department to allocate resources to the task ahead of time. The IT department should have a prepared policy or procedure with a checklist for both immediate and subsequent activities.
Immediate: The following activities should take place during the process or as soon as possible afterwards.
- Disable network access account
- If email is not federated with network access disable access. Forward email to another member of the department or supervisor.
- Disable VPN or remote system access
- Disable access to voice mail. Forward calls to another member of the department or supervisor.
- Wipe mobile device if company owned and issued. If the mobile device is employee-owned use discretion using remote wipe. Most remote wipe such as those available in Microsoft Exchange® are designed to wipe the entire device including personal collateral such as images, applications, and text messages. Even though systems do prompt the user to accept this condition of accessing the company network many do not realize the extent of the remote wipe ability.
- Disable account in any cloud-based services such as Salesforce
- Disable building or property access system account
- Disable accounts for file sharing applications such as Dropbox, etc. If the file sharing application has the ability for remote wipe, all machines tied to the account should be remote wiped. Remember that many file sharing applications do not have the ability for remote wipe therefore any files stored in that system will be available to the employee on any outside systems they tied to the file sharing application.
- Consider special access such as web site backend and such that may also need to be disabled
- If necessary change the password on computer and physically secure the machine by removing it from the employee work area. Is only necessary to change the computer password if the company is not using a central identity management system such as Microsoft Active Directory®
- Collect any company-owned property such as building key fobs, smartphones, tablets, and notebook computers
Subsequent: The following activities do not need to take place immediately, but they should be added to the IT schedule.
- Archive files stored on personal computer.
- Delete the user’s telephone extension and voice mail. In some cases it might be desirable to archive voice mail messages. Update dial-by-name directory in the telephone system
- Archive data in personal folder on servers as well as on computer if folder redirection is not being utilized in the organization.
- Archive contents of email mailbox and delete mailbox. Be sure to capture contacts and calendar appointments if appropriate. Refer to corporate policy or meet with supervisor if the email address needs to be added to another user as an alias address. Without this alias email to that user will bounce back to the sender as undeliverable.
Lotus Management Services is a managed IT services provider serving small to medium size businesses throughout Florida with an emphasis on discrete and process manufacturers. The team provides small businesses with 24/7 computer system monitoring and help desk support with a 90-day money back guarantee. Utilizing the LotusWay system we eliminate common computer issues that cause lower productivity and business losses.
Lotus provides services including:
- Telephone systems
- Managed network security
- 24-hour help desk
- 24-hour on site desk side support
- Server, network, and desktop implementation
- Cloud computing solutions