Toxic Employee

Dear Management Doctor: 

A colleague of mine mentioned that he read an article or publication which you had authored that focused on convincing a difficult employee that it was their idea to leave rather than be fired. I couldn't find any articles or publications in my admittedly quick search of your website. Could you point me in the right direction? I have a toxic employee that is also technically incompetent. With staffing resources so tight, I can no longer afford to go without the capacity that position has the potential to offer. The person has been with the organization 15 years and none of my predecessors have addressed the performance issues which seem to be acknowledged throughout the organization. So, as the new manager, I get the enviable task of being the cleaner.

Thank you,
The Cleaner

Dear Cleaner,
Click here for the article. You can find this and other items on terminating employees using the search engine on our website. If you are in an “at will” situation I would just proceed. However, you likely are in a Civil Service situation which requires more documentation and work. Think of the employee as not toxic but toxic in your situation. They need to find an organization that fits their skill and personality. You can help with that. The first step with the three step approach is getting agreement that there is a problem. Unless that can be achieved you are in for a long term messy situation. This system does work but it takes time. But then, so does the standard approach used by most Human Resource Departments.

Let me know how it goes.

The Management Doctor


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