For many business owners the only thing worse than hiring, is firing someone. I have seen it far too often with my business coaching clients. It often starts with procrastinating filling a position in the first place, only to find out days, weeks or even months down the road that you chose a team member that wasn't a good fit for the position or the company.
"I know I have a real staffing issue with Katelyn, but I'll just wait and see if things straighten out on their own first."
Why do so many entrepreneurs do this? Because they are not willing to face the temporary discomfort, usually emotional discomfort, of meeting the moment directly. And the consequences of such a choice can be devastating for your business and growth potential.
Admit You Made a Mistake, Quickly
The first and probably the most important thing to do in this situation is be honest with yourself. You made a mistake, you hired the wrong person, and now it is time to deal with it. Don't let it linger or fester while you "hope" for a resolution. Because while you sit around "hoping" your poor hiring choice is causing real tangible damage to your growth and momentum. This could manifest in a variety of ways: damage to your company culture (what are they saying to other team members), damage to your companies bottom line (is their behavior affecting sales or collections) and damage to your growth potential (is the behavior correction and hand holding taking your management team away from high value tasks?).
Once you realize the damage that waiting causes, it is much easier to make the decision to act quickly.
Do It Today
Once you decide that it's time, you need to do it. Today. There is no magic solution here or tips to making it easier. Just rip the band aid off, schedule the call or meeting and make it happen. You will feel a thousand times better once the conversation has been had. Again, it's normal to be anxious and nervous, but you owe it to your business to push through those feelings and act quickly.
Refer to Your Network
And last but not least, I have found that it is much easier to take action on a poor hiring choice when you already have a network for qualified people in the que.
Here's how Dr. Geoff Smart, co-author of the New York Times bestseller Who, puts it: "The best CEOs all know that they need to invest in building a rich referral network of talented A players well in advance of having an opening. This way, when you go to hire that new VP of sales or operations manager, you have a network to turn to in order to find great candidates fast."
So, if you already have someone else in mind it is much easier to keep your momentum and growth.
Firing an employee is never easy, and even the most seasoned of executives struggle from time to time with these decisions and tough conversations. So begin with the hiring process and do your due diligence to give yourself the best possible chance for success. And if it still isn't a good fit, rip the band-aid off quickly and keep moving forward.