Throw Back Saturday: 10 Simple Ways to Get an Employee to Quit

If you have someone you want to get rid of, but you are too wimpy to fire him, there are some things you can do to make him miserable enough to start looking for a new job, just to get the heck out of Dodge.

Here are 10 of them:

1. Lower pay.

It’s perfectly legal (as long as there’s no contract involved) to lower pay if you announce it in advance (and in writing, in some jurisdictions). So, you can say, “Starting next month, you’ll be making $10,000 less per year!” but not, “Oh, by the way, your paycheck is smaller today because I cut your pay.”

2. Dock an exempt employee’s PTO for everything.

Your employee has a sick kid and wants to work from home? Charge it to his PTO bank. What about a one-hour dentist appointment? PTO dock. Coming in 15 minutes late? You betcha. Now, if an employee is exempt, you can’t dock actual pay, but as long as his pay remains the same, you can dock PTO.

To keep reading, this older post, click here: 10 Simple Ways to Get an Employee to Quit

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17 thoughts on “Throw Back Saturday: 10 Simple Ways to Get an Employee to Quit

  1. My last boss did 6 of the 10 on this list. I didn’t quit but I did end up in the hospital with severe anemia from stress and had to get 4 pints of blood. Yeah, good times… It has worked out okay though. The company we worked for left the market. I am now self-employed and my former company is now one of my clients. He couldn’t find a job locally and had to move 2 hours away. I wish him the best but far, far away from me.

    And I will never tolerate that behavior again. I will walk away from a client/job rather than deal with that abuse again.

  2. If you are gone two hours for a doctor’s appointment, how can an entire day of PTO be taken away?

    1. Some companies do not allow you to split PTO, some do. They’re not legally required to. The best company I was with had it in 15 minute increments, but most of the places I worked were a minimum of an hour. A friend works for a place that doesn’t split down PTO. It’s stupid, because if you’re going to dock me a full day for an appointment, I’m going to call off the whole day. It costs the company in productivity. I can understand not wanting to do finicky maths and say allow it in hours or something but wanting a full day is kind of dumb policy. But dumb isn’t illegal at least in the US.

      1. Yes, hourly increments are reasonable. But a full day minimum is ridiculous. And so is docking PTO for an exempt employee who could otherwise make up the time.

  3. My favorites: Performance Improvement Plans and/or impossible goals! Where I formerly worked, management constantly used the phase “raising the bar” — and it felt like I was straddling the bar…

  4. Every time I read an article like this I become even more thankful that I work where I do. No workplace is, and none of us are, perfect but not having to deal with even the hint of these things is such a blessing.

  5. Death by a thousand cuts. This is indeed Evil. The best way? Get your act together and fire the employee.

  6. Gee a description of real jobs out in the field. All goes to show that we work with humans. Whatever companies that have managers doing that, I feel there is a big lack of communication all the way from the top CEO. Too many managers take the easy way to deal with employees whose performance effects others. Okay, every case must be dealt with separately depending on circumstances but a FAIR policy should be in place and no one should bend it more than another.
    So if one is allowed special scheduling then others when needing same should be allowed also All of those ways to ease out of firing an employee directly will only result in unhappy employees.

  7. Ignore the office bullies – I think this is the hardest for managers to deal with as a bully can be as sweet as pie around or in dealing with the managers and their friends while being a downright ogre when dealing with others.

  8. This is straight out of the Whistle blower Reprisals Handbook. The bit you left out was what to do if the employee puts in a request for protection against reprisals for reporting misconduct.

    According to the Handbook, the request is downgraded to a grievance, and the whistle blower is directed to resolve the personality clash they created.

    If the whistle blower persists in requesting protection from the management activities described in this post, they are directed to undergo a psychiatric evaluation by a psychiatrist chosen and paid for by the organization.

    BTW, this is probably the only way whistle blowers CAN get their evidence examined. Like every doctor, psychiatrists are obliged to assess the signs and symptoms of illness before making a diagnosis. If a doctor ignores evidence that the patient’s statements are not delusional, this is medical malpractice. Few doctors are prepared to put their license on the line by deliberately making a false diagnosis.

    If the whistle blower brings documents supporting his allegations to the assessment, the psychiatrist must conclude that the whistle-blower statements are not delusions. This will probably be the only recorded acknowledgement of the evidence of wrongdoing and reprisals; something the employer had hitherto avoided doing.

  9. This is absolutely deplorable. Passive aggressive bosses and HR employees need to grow a spine. Per a favorite quote of mine, “It’s time to nut up or shut up” (Zombieland).

  10. On #1: For the second year in a row, my companies’ Outside Sales Reps were sat down and told they made too much money in the past year, so they have to either a commission cut or leave. I truly believe Corporate doesn’t understand how commission is earned.

    1. Ehh. I have seen some wacky commission structures that were not profitable. The reality is sales don’t occur in a vacuum and you cannot give so much commission that you can not cover your overhead.

  11. I know some otherwise decent managers who screw up on the PTO thing. My recent manager struggled with this – mainly because he had never supervised an exempt employee before. I believe he thought it would be unfair to not dock my PTO. Finally I asked him if he thought it was “unfair” that I did not get paid overtime and he got the point.

  12. May I add #11? Humiliating employees in front of their peers. I had a manager who wanted to lay off a large number of his employees and was not permitted by HR to do so. He would jeer at people in meetings and call all hundred of us together to spend half an hour dressing down one person in front of everyone. It resulted in a lot of voluntary quits, just as he wished, until HR caught on and fired him.

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