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How Do You Sack Your Friends?

12
Jan 2012

Your organisation is “making cuts and managing costs”.
That means people will be “made redundant, sacked, or fired” and loose their incomes which effect their families and confidence. Since this is widescale they may not get another job easily.

What is so tough is that good leaders have built strong friendships with their direct reports. They may have played golf together, been out to dinners and drinks or had them back home for dinner. Now you have to sit some of them down and say “I’m really sorry but I’m going to have to let you go……”

This is a horrible moment. The more brutal managers say bluntly,”that is why I am distant and never build close relationships with direct reports; you can fire them without any qualms!”

I don’t subscribe to that approach; I have experienced that teams that are inspired and well lead have close trusting relationships. Such leaders also have the courage to eyeball those they lead and tell them the difficult truth about firing them. They do it with dignity and kindness and help them transition to a new role. They don’t shy away. They are often thanked later for the way in which they did it and helped them with a different career path.

Have the difficult conversations. Remember someone may be doing the same to you one day.

Warm regards Jonathan

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