How to Fire Someone over the Phone

Most organizations, if not all are always looking to improve on their current level of performances. They tend to do so, by watching their employees improve as time goes by.

However, in every organization, there are employees and workers who just don’t seem to fit into the bigger picture and hence have to be let go off.

Now, sometimes, these employees are such, that you want to terminate their contract with the company, but you don’t want to do it in person. In this case, the best thing to do, is to ask them not to come back in via the phone.

This doesn’t allow them to be hostile and makes it easier for you to convey your message, without them being able to retaliate in a negative way, as they could have in person.


  • 1

    Make the call

    The first step you need to do, is to pick up the phone and make the call to the employee. This is possibly the hardest thing to do, since no one wants to pick up the phone and tell someone that they are no longer needed.

    However, with you being responsible for the termination, you might as well go all in at this point.

  • 2

    Make it brief

    You don’t want to talk to them about the smaller things in life when you make a termination call. This is why you should try and keep it as brief as you can. This way, their feelings won’t be too hurt and they won’t start asking you questions you might not have any answers to.

    Try keeping the call less than 3 minutes, but you may extend it to 5 minutes if you really want.

  • 3

    Tell them why you have made the call

    You are looking to fire the person you have called, so there is no point in beating around the bush. Just jump right into the thick of things and tell them exactly what’s going on.

    This way there won’t be any love lost between the both of you, and you can both be on your way sooner rather than later.

  • 4

    Offer them your condolences

    Now that you have told them that they are no longer needed, show some humanity by offering them your condolences and offering to help them as much as you can. This is not something anyone expects you to follow through on, but you may do so any way.

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