Cutting ties with wrong-fit employees

March 20, 2018 By    

Letting an employee go is difficult for most businesspeople. Some of the indicators of wrong-fit people on the team is they may be skilled at their jobs, but they often disagree and oppose new ideas. They use clever excuses or exaggerate their accomplishments, but lack real results. And yet, we feel responsible for them and believe it would be disloyal to let them go.

In contrast, the A-type players on your team are eager to learn. They are aligned with your values, goals and overall vision for the company. C players, on the other hand, resist change and cause management and others to spend much of their time and energy trying to work around them.

In Shannon Waller’s book, “Multiplication by Subtraction,” she points out that this type of behavior is toxic to your team. Management justifies keeping these employees because they have good relationships with customers. They fear that if they let these employees go, the work will come back on them.

The author recommends several benevolent options, such as giving these employees six months to find other employment or giving them time off for job interviews. Every business needs a sustainable culture. And by letting go of wrong-fit people, it will clear the air and remove the barriers that have kept your team from being more productive.

Ken Albrecht is president of Reliable Propane in Clarence Center, New York. He can be reached at or 716-741-3000.

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