Skip to main content

How Not to Fire Somebody

Sure, terminating an employee is a dirty job. But, hey—at least you still have a job.


  • Step 1: Come out of left field Never provide constructive criticism to an employee, or alert him to the fact that his performance is below expectations. You’re supposed to write this kind of stuff down and maintain a file on it—but why bother?
  • Step 2: Don’t think When it’s time to give someone the boot, give no thought to what you are going to say, and avoid familiarizing yourself with the chain of events leading up to termination. Be unorganized and uncaring.
  • Step 3: Get to the point Come right to the point. Something like 'Morning, Tommy. Guess what? YOU’RE FIRED!!!' is a real attention grabber—and says it all. Under no circumstances make eye contact with the condemned.
  • TIP: Feel free to take a personal phone call in the middle of the firing—and stay on for at least five minutes.
  • Step 4: Be unhelpful When the employee asks about collecting unemployment, say, 'How would I know? I still have a job.' Then chortle.
  • Step 5: Escort him out Escort the ex-employee off the premises in the most conspicuous manner possible.
  • TIP: Consider doing the firing over the phone—from the comforts of home, late in the evening, with the TV on, preferably after you’ve mellowed out with a few glasses of wine.
  • Step 6: Don’t stop rumors If you start to hear whispers among the staff that the fired worker must have been stealing from the company, don’t bother setting the record straight. It’s not polite to pass judgment.
  • FACT: Studies show 70% of people are fired because of personality conflicts.

You Will Need

  • Someone to fire
  • A complete lack of professionalism
  • A self-absorbed nature

Popular Categories