One of this blog’s most popular posts has been 24 Questions to Ask Before Terminating an Employee. Here’s another question to ask: Why now?
One way that employees and their lawyers attack the employer’s justification for the termination is to question the timing. Why wasn’t the decision made closer in time to the event the employer complains about? Why wasn’t it made after an earlier, more egregious occurrence?
If the termination gets challenged, the employee and his or her lawyer will have months to come up with holes in the employer’s rationale for terminating. So it’s important for employers and their counsel to give serious thought to how their justification will withstand that scrutiny. Therefore, add “Why now?” to my earlier list of questions to ask before terminating.