Employee Discipline

No one likes to discipline an employee, but sometimes it is necessary. The single biggest mistake employers make in disciplining employees is not documenting the discipline taken. Even though an employee is an at-will employee, it is a good idea to document poor performance prior to terminating the employee. Such documentation will help defend against any lawsuits filed by the employee. Relatedly, any progressive discipline policy must be clear that it does not modify the employee’s at will status. It may be best not to have a written progressive discipline policy. You are still free to progressively discipline employees even without such a policy. You should never say or do anything, however, to suggest that the employee is anything other than an at-will employee.

Next: Termination