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Letting Someone Go


The day I had to fire someone.


This conversation was awkward for a lot of reasons but the most obvious is that I was telling someone they were no longer going to receive a paycheck. Having any sort of control over someone else’s livelihood terrified me. I knew I was going to fire this person for about a week. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t sleep, I lost weight.


The day came, the deed was done and the pain in the person’s eyes will be something I see until the day I die; but, this was the best decision for everyone. If you find yourself in this boat ask yourself the following questions:

  • Have I given fair warning of expectations?

  • If this person stays on board am I afraid the same errors will continue?

  • How much money will we lose if they stay?

  • How much will their staying effect our reputation?

In the case of this employee I knew the answers and in the end both the organization and the person flourished once separated from one another.


The next time you find yourself in this position, remember it's not the end of any story. Your company will continue and the person you let go will also continue somewhere else.

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