Saying goodbye to a new hire is never easy. You will almost certainly have invested time and money recruiting them and it is difficult to ‘throw this away’. You may have made the decision yourself, which means pride may not allow you to admit that you have made a mistake. It maybe that it was very difficult to find the right person and the idea of going back to the drawing board dismays you.
Many employers hold on to new recruits for these reasons and then wonder why they end up spending time and effort trying to bring them up to speed or resolving the conflicts or performance issues they have caused.
Instead, you need to face the truth. Using a good objective monitoring process from the outset can be very helpful and can help you identify the potential problems. This needs to be easy to use and clear. It should also be documented for your protection.
Once you can see the problems or areas of difficulty, it is easier to decide how to respond to them. If the issues are mainly around skills, experience, being slow to learn your procedures or systems, you may decide that these can be tackled with a bit more time, effort and guidance. Maybe training is needed or just a bit of patience.
If your monitoring process reveals behaviour issues, these are much more serious. In general, people are not willing or able to change their fundamental behaviours – once a bully, always a bully. These issues are best tackled head on and sooner rather than later. A frank discussion with the individual emphasising your values, ethics and business requirements should give them pause for thought and give you a chance to re-consider their suitability. Or you may already have made up your mind and so this conversation will move into a dismissal conversation.
Beware, even employees with very short service have employment rights. Special consideration should be given to younger and older workers, and workers from different ethnic or cultural backgrounds. You also need to give special consideration to workers with a disability or with some other health issue that may be impacting their behaviour. Always take advice before you dismiss anyone!
If you would like help identifying and drawing up an objective monitoring process to see what is going wrong (and right) with a new recruit, please let me know. You can then make the right decision at the end of the probationary period.