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Firing Underperforming Employees in Your Small Business

Here are a few tips on how to hand out pink slips when it comes time to terminate an employee.

As a small business owner with employees, you will likely find it necessary one day to terminate an underperforming employee ? if you haven't already. In an ideal world, that wouldn't be so. We would hire the right people from the start, and then train and motivate them to do the job.

But, that's not realistic. In the audio book, "Sound Advice on Small Business," entrepreneur Jim Schell says, "The world and the people who inhabit it fall something short of perfect, and thus firing is a necessary evil of having employees."

For some small business owners, taking this unfortunate step is stressful. It might be tempting to delay the action. Schell says don't. "Once you've made the decision, get on with it," he says. "Procrastination is painful for both parties."

Before calling the employee into your office, prepare yourself mentally. "Remember that the underperforming employee is dragging down the rest of the team," says Schell. "Good employees are being penalized."

Finally, Schell suggests doing the dirty deed on Fridays. "Give both parties the weekend to recover," he says. "And remember, it's a heck of a lot harder on whoever's on the other side of the desk."

Jim Schell, co-author of "Small Business for Dummies," offers advice to entrepreneurs on managing a small business in the free audio newsletter from What's Working in Biz, http://www.whatsworking.biz/full_story.asp?ArtID=92.

About The Author

Richard Cunningham is a principal of What's Working in Biz, http://www.whatsworking.biz, the audio marketing firm bringing voice to the insights of business experts through audio books, newsletters, and magazines.

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