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Sooner the better

A response to a recent post contained a link to an article on dealing with “toxic” employees. We all know what a toxic person is. An “it’s all about me” attitude is the primary quality. A toxic employee is dangerous because negativity seems to be much more contagious than positiveness. Examples of this abound.

It’s not always easy to identify a toxic attitude when considering a prospective employee. Sometimes the negativity is well masked, subtle and easy to miss, becoming apparent only after the hire is made. So, the question becomes what to do about it.

There are many strategies for dealing with a toxic employee but, after many experiences with this, I have boiled it down to one. Get them out!!! You simply cannot afford to keep them in your shop. The value of the time spent trying to get them to become more positive will quickly become astronomical. The level of frustration will rise as you continue to try to be fair. Meanwhile the negativity will continue to affect your whole shop and, in the end, the result will be the same and you will have to send them down the road.

It’s a lot easier to get it over with quickly and be done with it. “This is just not working out” is a good place to start. Or, if you don’t want to deal with the fallout from that, just try “Things are slow. I can’t keep this many people on right now.” But one way or another, the sooner you get them out of your shop, the better. 

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Be careful

In a reply to my recent post about employees, it was suggested that new hires be treated as independent contractors for a period of time until they have proven their worth.