How to let go of nice people
Its easy getting rid of assholes. Its never nice firing nice people.
But sometimes a nice person has to go, and the only question is “How?”
Rule number one is show respect.
Most of the time, strict adherence to the law is the wrong process because it incentivizes the employer to “manage” the person out of the business with formal warnings and subtle hints, humiliating him in front of colleagues and destroying trust in management.
Don’t make it any more embarrassing than it has to be. Everyone has self-dignity, and the truth is that there are always two sides to a story.
The employer is normally equally to blame for things not working out.
But you gotta do what you gotta do, so when you’ve realized he’s not the right guy, call a meeting and have an honest “Dear John” conversation.
One of three things will happen:
- John will accept that an unhappy marriage is bad for everyone, and agree to part ways. No hard feelings. The employer and John will reach terms and it will be the happiest possible ending to an unhappy situation.
- John will go psycho. Maybe John is psycho. Maybe that’s why you’re firing him. Pay him to go away. Stick to the law, otherwise he’ll take you to court. Never hire psychos.
- John will accept the decision, but refuse to believe it. He’ll think its just a practical joke, even once he’s been paid a severance, left the company and he’s now unemployed with two young children and a mortgage.
The third scenario is the worst scenario. Why? Because it’s the scenario most followed by really nice people. And no one likes to see nice people get hurt. Because of the state of denial, John doesn’t chase a new job fast enough. Before he knows it he doesn’t have cash for school fees and his mortgage.
John starts to panic. Cash-poor parents parent become desperate and panic. That kind of stress changes people’s brains and they do things that they would never normally do.
The only way to help John is to not judge him. Don’t turn your back on him. If you were in his shoes, you would do the same thing. John is a fundamentally nice human being, and when he’s through the crisis he’ll revert to the original John.
But, until the crisis has passed, John will be a psycho. And psychos are best left alone.
Alan Knott-Craig Jr is the founder & CEO of Project Isizwe, a company facilitating the roll-out of free Wi-Fi networks across Africa, funded by municipalities. Founder of Ever Africa: eCommerce, games, education, eBooks and telecoms in Africa.
Founder & CEO of Project Isizwe, a company facilitating the roll-out of free Wi-Fi networks across Africa, funded by municipalities. Founder of Ever Africa: eCommerce, games, education, eBooks and telecoms in Africa.
You may also like ...
Its easy getting rid of assholes. Its never nice firing nice people. But sometimes a nice person has to go, and the only question is “How?” Rule number one is show respect. Most of the time, strict adherence to the law is the wrong process because it incentivizes the employer to “manage” the person out…
- Introducing ‘Startup Picnic Academy’ – Rapid Short Courses for Earning A Living and Innovating
- Come network with entrepreneurs at STARTUP PICNIC JHB this Saturday 25 September 2021
- Press Release: Startup Picnic in Jane Furse on 26 October 2019 – The Ultimate Fun Event for Entrepreneurs Comes to Ga Sekhukhene
- STARTUP PICNIC SOWETO – The Ultimate Fun Event for Entrepreneurs Hits Soweto, 14 April 2019
- #BreakfastTalk @ STARTUP PICNIC: Entrepreneurship Struggles and Anxieties, ft. Tebatso Molapo, Tendai Joe, Mark Makhubalo, Kelahloko Mashiloane and Luga Ncala (MC)
- Shoprite launches competition to boost small businesses
- Spring picnic for entrepreneurs – STARTUP PICNIC SPRING EDITION, 29 September 2018
- Introducing Max Lichaba as STARTUP PICNIC 7 April 2018 #BreakfastTalk speaker
- STARTUP PICNIC returns, 7th April 2018 – the coolest entrepreneurship gathering in South Africa
- The Top 3 Best Places to Network in South Africa
- African Tech Startups Raised Funding in Excess of $185.7m in 2015
- Four Steps to Avoid being Ditched by your Regular Clients
- The 5 BIG Myths of Self-Employment
- Chivas Regal’s ‘The Venture’ is Searching for Global Social Entrepreneurs to Award a Share of $1 Million
- STARTUP PICNIC Chats to the Founder of Tembisa Lifestyle Market, Lebogang Mukansi
- Mentoring Your Kids for Entrepreneurship: Lessons from a Mother
- The Reasons Why People Do Not Want You To Follow Your Dreams
- Entrepreneurial Depression: I Felt Like I Was Spiralling Deep Into a Dark Hole
- Start-Ups are just the Start
- Four Ways for Entrepreneurs to Defuse Anxiety