Over the past twenty plus years, I have heard and seen it all. It does not matter the size of the firm. AM100. Mid-sized firms. Small firms. Or, solo practices. All have the same problem when it is time to fire an employee.
I have seen situations where good employees turned bad. People a law firm hired that they should not have recruited in the first place. There are always Associates that burn out. They lose interest and just go through the motions.
Millennials can become disenchanted with law firm traditions and firm cultures. They are not interested in the code of self-sacrifice that their seniors preach.
I remember Fred who had a senior associate in his Trust and Estates firm that was killing his practice. She did not do her work, at all.
“I can’t let Janet go! She is a single mother with children. She has been with me for over fifteen years. Fred kept Linda and almost lost everything.”
I am the first one to identify a where both employee and employer would be better off going their separate ways. Fred finally listened to me. It is amazing how once Linda had gone, Fred turned his mid-sized firm around to increased profits. By the way, Linda got a great new job.
What does this have to do with me? It is the old story of the cobbler’s children have no shoes.
It is my duty to make sure my clients increase their profits. I am like a detective. I investigate every aspect of a firm that could be leaking cash and losing profits.
Now it was my turn. A growing international consulting practice requires that I have the right people.
I had hired a woman I will call Irma. Irma became too busy to take care of my copy editing needs. But, both of us had the sentimental and emotional bond of a history together.
As a business owner, it is my job to take responsibility for my reputation and the quality of my work. My copy editor was failing at her job, and unfortunately, I didn’t see it. It was time for me to practice what I preach.
Thankfully, one of my clients took me aside and pointed out a few problems in a recent post. I was mortified.
Her words rang in my ears, “Pamela this type of thing can hurt your business. As a lawyer myself, I have to tell you that we are very particular.”
Her words shook me out of my inaction. The best part of being a consultant is that your clients are smart and on top of their game. I’ve noticed how brilliant people continually seek to advance and improve. I followed her advice.
3 Reasons to Fire an Employee
Here are three reasons good reasons that a firm needs to fire an employee:
- They are no longer doing a good job for you.
- The only reason you keep them is that you pity them.
- You allow them to work for you because of your history together not because they are doing a great job.
I knew these three reasons applied to my situation and it was time for action.
I called my copyeditor, and we had a heart to heart discussion.
“Yes, I have been ready to move on. I just couldn’t bring myself to say it to you.” Irma admitted.
“Okay.” I said, “You are fired.”
Within a few hours through referrals, my new copy editor will begin next week.
What About You?
What about you? Are you hanging on to an employee or service in which you both would be better off moving on?
Tags: #Lawyer #Solicitor #Attorney #Attorney #Lawfirm #Attorneyatlaw #Barrister #youarefired #fired
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