Monday, December 17, 2012


Greetings!  I hope that you all had a positive and productive weekend.  Myself, I got my desk cleared for the first time in what seems like forever.  I had a few things that had piled up since we got the new dog.  I finally got that stuff filed away.  So today, I want to start talking about Termination Interviews.  I am breaking this topic into 2 parts.  Part one will be about Termination Interviews for Voluntary Terminations.  Another part will look at Involuntary Terminations.  Please feel free to comment below.  Have you ever been through a Termination Interview?  Feel free to talk about your own experiences.


Sometimes an employee chooses to leave.  An employee may be excited about leaving his current position for some other opportunity.  However, before they go, they will typically tell their employer about it first.  This is what is known as Termination Interview (different from an Exit Interview).  

Reasons for Leaving

An employee may choose to leave for a number of reasons.  Some of these may include:
  •          Another Job:  Higher pay/Better benefits
  •          Another Job:  Better Work Environment/More Compatible
  •          Another Job:  Shorter Commute
  •          Spouse/Child:  A relative is moving them to another area
  •          Spouse/Child:  Need time/space to care for a relative
  •          Self-Employment:  A decision a start own business
  •          Retirement:  Taking a break from work
  •          Education:  Deciding to go to school full-time
There can be many reasons an employee may choose to leave.  Be supportive where you can, but do not make any offers on behalf of the company that you are not authorized to make.

About the Interview

This interview does not usually involve HR directly unless the departing employee is part of the Human Resources department.  This is typically an employee initiated interview that takes place between the worker and their immediate supervisor.  This is where they announce their intentions to move on.  Depending on the company policy, you may try to change their mind by reminding them of all of the positive benefits of working in their current position.  The employee will most likely provide some of the reasons behind their decision to leave.  Be sure to really listen and take good notes.  Do not interrupt.  Do not become defensive.  Do not become offensive.  This is the time to negotiate for time.

Negotiate for Time

After the employee has made the decision to leave, you can ask the employee when they intend to leave.  The most common timeframe will be two weeks’ notice but sometimes you may have a couple of months.  If the notice is short, try to persuade the employee to give you an additional week or two so a replacement can be trained.  The employee may be willing to give you a little breathing room so that clients, cases, and assignments can be moved over.  You will probably want to ask the employee to prepare a resignation letter (if they have not already done so) so you can have an official record of their decision.

When the interview is over, you will be able to begin preparations for transition.

And remember all of you Human Resources professionals:  Be Human... Be a Resource...  Be a Resource for Humans.

 Disclaimer:  The views expressed in this post are by the author Trevor Stasik, and do not necessarily reflect the views of any employer or any other organization. Please note, this information is based on my understanding and is only to be used for informational and educational purposes.  Do not take what I am writing as advice.  Seek your own legal counsel and/or see a tax accountant before making business or personal decisions.  The author of this post makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site. The owner will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. The owner will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information.

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