Philosophy and…The bitter end…

Philosophy and …Positive thinking

We don’t spend much time philosophizing when it comes to selling soap, but occasionally there’s room for a bit of it. Consider this observation from a classic philosopher: “The least of things in life that have meaning are worth more than the greatest of things without it.”

Well maybe to some delivering great sanitation for our customers falls into that least of things category, but if there’s meaning to that task, it can be very satisfying. Either way, it’s what we’re committed to doing five days a week, so given the choice of it being either unfulfilling and dull, compared to making us both a nice living and being satisfying, the choice is pretty obvious.

The ability we all have within us to transform what others might see as drudgery into something that makes us feel satisfied and fulfilled is there. And what each of us does to create that environment is what makes that positive outcome possible.

So, maybe before we set out on that first stop in the morning, we need to take a minute and consider the positive side of what we’re doing for ourselves, our family and our customers. Who knows, maybe we’ll find exactly the kind of meaning old Carl Gustav Jung was referring to when he first offered his observation on things with (and without) meaning.

The bitter end…made less so

So, you’ve decided that the time has come to terminate that really difficult employee, but you’ve got some concerns. It might be a matter of worry over the possibility of an unjustified wrongful dismissal claim, or perhaps that associates’ volatile personality might be an issue. In either event, the situation calls for extra concern and careful handling.

For starters it might be best to handle the matter in a public place that also provides a degree of privacy. Maybe a quiet corner in a coffee shop, or some other public area that will temper the possibility of an eruption. Then there’s the matter of what’s said and how it’s delivered. But if we accept the fact that it’s no longer a matter of correcting poor performance and that your job is to sever ties with the least amount of strife, you’ll be better prepared.

Finally, if the matter warrants it, consider having a witness sit in. The presence of a second person can dampen the chances of a volatile situation erupting and provide a witness who can attest to the manner of the termination meeting and – if it comes to that, someone to vouch for your behavior and or to counter any unwarranted claims by that about to be ex-associate.

Next up: Better hiring for fewer failures.