3 Major Reasons You May Not Want to Fire an Angry Employee

“Anger is one letter short of danger.” Eleanor Roosevelt

Anger left unchecked in the workplace can be dangerous on many levels.  An angry employee may cause conflict among co-workers, offend clients, undermine organizational goals, taint organization culture, or become a physical danger.  Anger in the workplace should not be ignored; it needs to be taken seriously, but it does not mean you have to let the person go.

For many bosses and human resources professionals, when an employee has an anger issue that shows itself at work, firing the individual seems unavoidable.  You don’t want the anger to impact others or the work environment.  You don’t want the risk or liability of a person with anger issues at your organization.  But firing a valued employee, especially a high performing one, is often not best for the employee or the company.

These are the 3 major reasons you may not want to fire that angry employee:

  1. You have a lot invested. You spent a lot (in time and money) hiring and training your employee; you don’t want to lose all that investment.
  2. Turn over costs are high. Hiring and training a replacement employee is expensive and time consuming.
  3. Your other employees are watching. Employee turnover impact organizational morale.  Demonstrating that you are willing to help a member of your team boosts the morale of others.

Fortunately, termination is not your only option.  When an organization has a leader or an employee dealing with an anger management issue, firing them is not the only course of action to consider.  Professional Anger Management Coaching is a proactive approach that can help the individual grow personally and professionally.

During Anger Management Coaching the individual will be trained in skills such as communication, listening, managing stress, and conflict management, as well as practical effective ways for lowering anger and aggression.  Usually the classes are private, held once a week for an hour, for ten sessions, but individualized programs can be designed to meet specific organizational and individual goals.

For a valued and performing member of your team, Professional Anger Management Coaching can have a great return on the investment.  The skills learned benefit not only the individual attending, but often help them grow in leadership, as they model new healthier emotional management strategies within the workplace, benefiting co-worker, clients, and colleagues as well.

Bonus Benefit:  Limit liability. Offering the option of Anger Management Coaching, from a professional, can help mitigate the legal liability of the organization. 

Esther DeWitt, M.S., CAMS is an Organizational Psychology Practitioner specializing in conflict, anger management and leadership issues.  As president of Conflict Navigation, her services include anger management coaching, mediation, leadership and organizational consulting and training, and curriculum and material development.  She is a Certified Anger Management Specialist and Credentialed Mediator.

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