The Secret to Having Happy Employees

About 10 years ago I was having my annual holiday party, and my niece had come with her newly minted M.B.A. boyfriend. As he looked around the room, he noted that my employees seemed happy. I told him that I thought they were.

Then, figuring I would take his new degree for a test drive, I asked him how he thought I did that. “I’m sure you treat them well,” he replied.

“That’s half of it,” I said. “Do you know what the other half is?”

He didn’t have the answer, and neither have the many other people that I have told this story. So what is the answer? I fired the unhappy people. People usually laugh at this point. I wish I were kidding.

Full article here.

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Employment at will

Several commentors to the story said that you cannot fie people for being unhappy. I don't think they realize that in the US most employment is at will. This means you can leave for any reason and you can be let go for any reason. The only exception to this is if you are a member of a protected class and it is because of your protected class you are being fired. Happiness is not a protected class. People have a very inflated view of lawsuits. Unless your employer is blatantly discriminating on race you are not going to recover if you are fired. You may think you were wronged but being wronged and having a true legal action is two different things.

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