Myths about Discipline

#1:  As long as an employee is performing well, there is nothing I can do about their bad behavior.

It is important to bring the inappropriate behavior to the employee’s attention in a timely manner, discussing ways the behavior may be corrected/resolved and reviewing with the employee the position description and expected performance standards.  The employee needs to know that the inappropriate behavior is just that, inappropriate and is expected to stop.

#2:  Employees should already know what are my expectations and standards.  If they don’t meet them I can discipline them.

Gather facts before exploring the possibility of disciplinary action.  Find out the who, what, where, when, and how. Were there witnesses? The most important question to ask is to yourself, “Have I set clear expectations?”  If the answer is no, the next step is to set clear expectations, not discipline

#3: “At-will” employees may be terminated at any time for any reason.

At OSU we expect to give employees due process prior to being terminated. Employees should have the opportunity to give their side of the situation.  We need to look into the accusations.  The termination must be legal and nondiscriminatory; may not appear to be retaliatory, may not be based on age, religion, race, gender, sex or any other protected status and may not be in response to the employee engaging in a protected activity.

Blog.cupahr.org “3 Myths About Faculty and Staff Discipline” October 16, 2017, Jill Thompson

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