There is an opinion among many management experts that
providing an employee with a low performance rating will
help the employee realize that he/she is not an
appropriate fit for the organization. Additionally, this
realization will cause the person to resign and move-on to
Setting aside for the moment the high unemployment rate
that has diminished the number of “greener pastures,” the
idea that a low performer who receives consistently poor
performance ratings will move-on to another company on
his/her own is hard to believe.
It has been my experience that if the poor performer is
not motivated enough to meet the responsibilities of the
job, he/she will not be motivated enough to seek other
employment. The fact is that with a number of low
performers there exists a complacency factor that
embarrassingly low ratings will not overcome.
HR CONTRARIAN POINTER: In the vast majority of cases, if
the manager does not terminate the poor performer, the
employee will never leave. I have seen managers come to
this realization and I have seen managers employ the “I’ll
make it so difficult that the person will just quit” strategy.
The “I’ll make it so difficult…” strategy can easily
backfire into a lawsuit for constructive discharge or
hostile work environment.
The best tactic is an open and honest discussion of the
performance or behavior issues that need to change, or
else… And if the “or else” doesn’t happen in the time
prescribed, the termination needs to occur.
If you are interested in our approach to handling these
difficult conversations, download our white paper
“Open-Heart Conversations” at the link below: