Just Thinking
Things Good Management Don’t Do While Employee Serves Notice

In my last blog, I put forth 10 things that employees should try to avoid and not do, while they are serving their notice period. I tried to put down a certain way of ethical behaviour to be adopted by outgoing employees after resigning. But yes, building & maintaining a positive culture at workplace is not just an employees’ prerogative. Much of it starts with the Management, a lot of it especially from the Top.

So here I am writing some things that typically Good Management / Boards don’t do to employees who have put in their papers and are on their notice period:

 

Delaying Meeting by Management

As soon as the boss’ get to know of the impending news through grapevine about an XYZ employee receiving an offer letter, he tries the delaying tactics, not meeting the employee when the latter requests for his time etc. Perhaps in the hope to create doubt in his mind or to buy some more time or just because the boss wishes to discuss on the likely course of action from his boss (depending upon the criticality of that employee). Not Good. Ideally, this employee should get time of his boss, preferably the same day, in private, with no disturbance from fellow colleagues or phone ringing, so as to help him free his mind.

 

Counter-Arguing or Criticizing

Once the employee shares his intent of leaving, no point in counter-questioning or arguing or criticizing his choice. Management got no right to do that. Instead, think of why he thought of going for an interview in the first place, what triggered his mind to look outside and most importantly, why was nobody from the Management able to gauge this probable action pro-actively ? Trying to retain is a good thing and denotes positive intention, no doubt. But retention is reactive, and we should ideally search for pro-active solutions.

 

Resentment

This feeling can be gauged through a lot many actions. For Eg: Boss does the delaying tactics, employee shoots his resignation through email the next day, boss gets angry. Or despite all efforts by the Management to retain, the employee doesn’t get convinced and still wishes to go. It is well agreed and accepted that some employee, who has been honest, diligent and good in his work may have been very close to the Management and the latter feels unhappy or feels that the employee is taking a wrong decision. But if he has made up his mind, the bullet has left the gun. No point in keeping that pain in your heart. Let go !

“Retention Talk” To A Select Few

Management shouldn’t try to convince each & every one leaving. Rather, focus on your core team players, whom you wish to retain. There are 3 kinds of employees – Superior Performers, Average Performers and Poor Performers. When an employee wishes to discuss with his boss about his resigning, the boss should try to show empathy, listen patiently, help him vent his feelings. However, this is not a time to be nice. If he is a Poor Performer, immediately accept his resignation, don’t let him reconsider his decision. Between Average & Superior, depends on your assessment of situation. But convincing every Tom, Dick & Harry on staying, is a bad idea.

Ways of Retention

retention calls management meme

(Image Courtesy: Meme Generator)

It’s fine to talk to the employee & may be admit that “Yes, we weren’t able to gauge your uneasiness. Although it’s a little late now, but is there anything we can do to change your mind ?” It’s fine. But retaining by then offering salary hikes is a strict No No. I have strongly advocated against this practice in all my companies (except for about 1-2% times where the outgoing employee is very very critical to your operations, say a Technical Perfumer in an Aroma Chemical Company). I see most often, the functional head always comes to the HR Head & tries of convince the latter that an XYZ employee is critical, lets try to retain him. And it turns out that every outgoing employee in his department becomes critical and needs to be retained 🙂 May be because the functional head feels the job is getting done w/o him bothering. A new person has to be interviewed, he shall then give notice period, then he will join and finally take 4 months to learn – and there’s no guarantee when he too leaves. Rather, why not retain the existing guy at more salary. So, what are we doing here ? We are actually finding an escape route, an easy way out. But this salary hike after resigning is a wrong precedent being set before other employees.

Micro-Management

micro management meme

(Picture Courtesy: Pinterest)

In cases where Management’s efforts in retaining go in vain & if there is some resentment or if an employee has been asked to go, the next day onward suddenly everything changes. The employee is now being micro-managed, every small thing is asked, somebody is keeping tab on all his activities, he is not called for meetings or training. Co-Workers don’t communicate more often with him. I have never been comfortable with such treatment to anybody, unless it is an integrity issue. But then, if it is an integrity issue, why not outrightly ask delinquent employee not to come from the next day & clearing his Full & Final Settlement the same day ??

 

Taking Forever to Clear Full & Final Settlement

Let’s have a target date in mind or an unwritten rule on clearing the outgoing employee’s settlement. Say, within 15 days from his last date & he should be made aware of this before-hand. Ideally, the best treatment & respect given to anybody is when his final settlement cheque is handed over to him on his last day of work. Very few companies do it. Anyway, if we can clear the cheque in a set timeline, it also gets appreciated. And please avoid unnecessary minuscule deductions, being done as per the whims & fancies of the HR or Finance Manager 😉

While the above points are generic in nature, the treatment to be given to outgoing employee, peculiar situations arising in Company due to the employee’s nature / mannerisms etc, shall differ. In case any of you readers have other points or suggestions, feel free to contribute 🙂

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