Peninsula Face2Face - disciplining friends and family in the workplace

Peninsula Team

October 16 2015

It can be difficult for a business owner to conduct formal disciplinary proceedings against an employee when there is a personal relationship involved. When such personal factors are present, it is challenging to maintain the fairness and objectivity that an Employment Tribunal Judge requires. This is where Peninsula Face2Face can become an invaluable service. Many businesses have employees who have been with them since the business began trading. On this basis, just the thought of having to invite this long-standing employee into a formal disciplinary process, can be somewhat daunting, even to the most hardened of business owners. This is even more prevalent if that employee has a clean disciplinary record. However, a long-standing employee is not the only ‘personal factor’ which may affect a business owner’s mind when faced with the prospect of having to sit across a table to formally discuss disciplinary allegations against one of their employee. Another example of when a personal factor can become relevant is when the employee is a family member. Here at Peninsula Face2Face, we have conducted disciplinary hearings with the business owners’ brother/sister/cousin/best man. We have even conducted a disciplinary hearing for a business owner’s mother. We have also had situations whereby a business owner had given a job to a close friend’s son/daughter, however they are clearly not up to the task. Bringing that employee into a disciplinary hearing can lead to a ‘souring’ of the relationship between the business owner and their close friend. Regardless of what that personal relationship may be, any Employment Tribunal Judge would only see one relevant link between the two, namely a Contract of Employment. On this basis, that employee needs to be treated exactly the same as any other employee: fairly and consistently. Our experienced Peninsula Face2Face Consultants will ensure that the process is conducted in accordance with the ACAS Code and your company handbook. For further information on how our Peninsula Face2Face Team can help your business, whether this be with a disciplinary hearing, or any other form of formal employee meeting, please call a member of the dedicated Peninsula Face2Face team on 0844 892 3911. We look forward to hearing from you… Joseph Kemp Head of Peninsula Face2Face

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