Small business owners must make very tough choices from time to time. As a school owner, all of us want to make a winning team, group, and an organization. We can not build an excellent team without recruiting and retaining outstanding people or people who desire for excellence. Therefore, sometimes, you have to fire and dismiss a few employees who are not productive and accountable in their jobs.
This is also very different being letting a massive number of people go because of greed or indifference in a large corporation.
In a small business like a martial arts school, everyone's contribution really counts. We are dependent on each other for survival in this hyper-competitive world. Complacency and lack of accountability will lead to slow but certain business death for all small companies. This is where most small business owners fail.....we hire and keep wrong people for various reasons;
1) Emotionally attached because they are your friends, relatives, and students.
2) We overlook their deficiency because we do not have enough employees and often desperate to hire anyone
3) Our employees treat us like their own real family. They take our corrections like a nagging from their parents, but they do not understand the severity of their actions on the overall business. Both employes and employers can forget to keep it professional, without our emotional baggage.
4) They are often plugged in wrong job and assignments; out of their wishes or your needs, rather than what they are really good at based on the accurate assessment of their talents.
5) We are often afraid to let them go - out of fear of making the enemy (sometimes you do) and feeling guilty of financial difficulty they will go through by losing this job. This is especially difficult because you get personally attached to them in small business. This is, even more, sever in martial arts schools - where loyalty and friendships are a cornerstone of its existence. There are many tough martial artists who are willing to fight anyone, yet they can never bring themselves to fire someone. They do not fear combat, but they fear to lose their friends and members approval.
For those of you who are tormented over your inability to make that inevitable decision..... here is what Jack Welch (one of the greatest CEO of all time) said;
1) Sometimes, people get into a rut, and they just can't change - no matter what you do for them. You can not just wait on them forever. They need a change of scenery.
2) Having people who are not passionate about their jobs can affect the whole team morals. It also becomes a corporate culture.
3) They need to go so they can find jobs they can be passionate about, therefore, be more productive, happier, and proud of what they do. It is temporarily painful, but it will help them become a more successful individual. They will be happier in the end.
Of course, how you let them go is very important - and Steve Job was legendary in his abrasive and abusive style when he was frustrated or annoyed with Apple's employees. We must preserve their dignity and remember that they have family and loved ones. It is one of the most difficult things one can do, but you must do it if you are a business owner. How you do it....show your character, maturity, and knowledge.
As you as your heart is in the right place, I think we can let someone go with peace and confidence - knowing it will all turn out o.k.. There is a place in this world waiting for them. Let them find that place.