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Empower Underperforming Employees by Releasing Them to More Compatible Jobs

Elizabeth hired a family member to assist her growing business. The family member failed to perform the required duties of her job and, after a difficult yet thorough analysis, her employment was terminated. When the unemployment insurance (“UI”) Division of the Department of Labor (“DOL”) sent her a request for details of the termination, Elizabeth carefully provided the facts and evidence supporting them. The family member’s claim for UI benefits was denied. Now, other family members are angry with Elizabeth and have said she should withdraw her response.

The Conflict

Elizabeth and her family members disagree about her role in the UI process.

The Interests

Elizabeth wants to abide by the relevant law and honor her obligations as an employer. The family member who had been her employee wants money to live on until replacement employment is secured. The other family members want to know their unemployed loved one will have sufficient support.

The Possibilities

If Elizabeth could have the conflict resolved perfectly, the UI Division would apply the law fairly and accurately. Also, her family members would accept and respect the UI decision as a legal determination based on fact versus something she created or caused.

Presumably, the former employee-family member would be most satisfied if she could quickly find a higher paying job more compatible with her interests. Likewise, the other family members would probably find peace in her being happily employed.

The Actions

Elizabeth will honor her word and allow her statement to be used in the UI decision. (This also protects her from perjury and penalties her family members aren’t considering.) She will also give her former employee some tips on finding the work that inspires her. Elizabeth will remain loving and supportive despite the circumstances  and she will take a stand for herself, her business and her word. She will remain confident in the face of adversity. She will also look inside herself to determine why challenge from her family creates such insecurity. She will address that inner conflict. The unemployed family member will also honor her statement regarding her termination, and she will accept the UI decision. She will search for a new job in the chosen industry as well as whatever will pay her bills in the interim.

The other family members will trust Elizabeth, her former employee and the UI Division to resolve the conflict. They will love and support both of their family members, empowering them to be their best in this situation and beyond.

The Future

Elizabeth will hire a compatible employee to perform the duties that were not being completed by her family member. She will be a more effective manager, supervisor and entrepreneur.

The unemployed family member will find work that she enjoys and will develop self-sufficiency skills that serve her throughout her life.

Their family members will be able to focus on their own lives once they see there is nothing for them to do. Elizabeth and her former employee become leaders for them in their own conflicts.

Nance L. Schick, Esq. is a mediator, and conflict resolution coach based in New York City, where she works with creative professionals, entrepreneurs, human resources professionals, labor managers, risk managers, and executives to generate results beyond the boundaries of their imaginations. She is committed to creating a unified human race by empowering people to have lives they forgot were possible.