When an employee is facing disciplinary procedures at work it can significantly unsettle morale. Having an informal warning from a manager about bad performance or receiving a written warning about a breach in conduct can make an employee worry about their position at the company.
If you’re concerned about morale in the workplace, check you’re following these employee health & wellbeing tips for disciplinary procedures at work:
- Organise A One-To-One Session With Them
- Plan Goals For Their Improvement And Development
- Show Them Future Opportunities
- Team Building Activities
- Reward Hard Work
These tips are explored in greater detail below…
1. Organise A One-To-One Session With Them
Receiving a warning at work can be incredibly stressful for an employee. If they feel too embarrassed or ashamed to talk to their colleagues (or even their family and friends), they might not talk to anyone about it. Being unable to talk about a problem can cause an unmanageable amount of stress.
Schedule a meeting with the employee to talk to them. You can have an informal chat instead but organising a one-to-one meeting gives them the chance to prepare anything they want to talk about. Invite them to talk about how they feel and if they need any additional support.
2. Plan Goals For Their Improvement And Development
If the employee is not entirely sure what they have to do in order to avoid another disciplinary, you can help them. By planning goals and targets, they will have a clear path they can follow to keep on the right track. This will help reduce stress and the employee will feel like you’re making an extra effort to help them improve.
3. Show Them Future Opportunities
Facing disciplinary procedures at work can be a demoralising experience. In some cases, an employee may feel it is time to look for another job or their productivity may suffer. Help employees keep focused on the future. If the employee is obsessing about their disciplinary, it will only add further stress and make it difficult for them to move past it. During a one-to-one speak to them about where they want to go with their career and offer them any guidance if you can.
4. Team Building Activities
One of the best ways to revitalise morale in the office is by organising team building activities. Fun interactive games (quizzes, competitions, etc) encourages everyone to work together and can help improve teamwork skills in the office.
Managing a seasonal games competition that lasts over several weeks can be an effective distraction for an employee facing disciplinary procedures.
5. Reward Hard Work
An employee who is facing disciplinary procedures may lose some of their confidence. Some tasks can take longer to complete as they end up questioning and scrutinising everything they do, to ensure they don’t make any mistakes.
Rewarding them for their hard work and positive results will show they are on the right path and renew their confidence at work. It will also show that they are still a valued member of the team.
And this is a good time to give each other a reminder of what the true purpose of a disciplinary procedure at work is.
The Purpose Of Disciplinary Procedures At Work
Disciplinary procedures are necessary because these are the set of procedures to follow when an employee breaches their contract.
Having disciplinary procedures protects employees and the company. For minor misconducts, it is unfair to terminate an employee’s contract straightaway.
Issuing informal disciplinary procedures gives a manager or HR the chance to speak to the employee and make them aware that improvements must be made. It also gives an employee a chance to rectify the issues.
If it reaches the stage when the company has to terminate the employee’s employment then having several disciplinary warnings shows the company has terminated the contract fairly and given the employee sufficient opportunity to improve.
Types of Disciplinary Procedures
- Informal discussion: The employee’s manager or supervisor will speak to the employee in an informal discussion to try and resolve the problem.
- Formal verbal warning: In this case, the manager will speak to the employee but this time it will be regarded as a formal warning and the manager may state the employee has three months to make improvements.
- Formal written warning: If improvements have not been made after a verbal warning, a written warning can be given to the employee.
- Final written warning: This is the employee’s final warning, outlining that any further misconduct will result in termination of their contract.
Gross misconduct: A company has the right to dismiss an employee immediately on grounds of misconduct without following the disciplinary procedures listed above. An employee has the right to seek legal representation and appeal if they believe they were wrongly dismissed.
When an employee is facing disciplinary procedures at work, it’s natural for them to feel unhappy or lose confidence in their abilities. They might even start looking for another job. You can protect the employee from additional stress, improve their confidence and help them move on from their disciplinary warning by taking time out of your schedule to manage their morale.
By intervening you can help the employee move past this stressful period, renew their confidence and show them your company wants them to stay.