Being in a management position involves enforcing disciplinary actions to your customers and issuing them verbal warnings if they do not meet your expectations. Verbal warnings discipline employees who display unacceptable conduct at work and violate some of the companies’ policies. It gives employees a chance to improve their behavior and performance at work. Below are some steps on how to issue a verbal warning a work.
Call the employee to a private place
Calling the employee to a private room will avoid disruptions to the company's ongoing work by preventing other employees' involvement in the matter. You can invite a supervisor to the meeting and allow the employee to bring a coworker to act as a witness to the issues discussed in the meeting. You can do this by organizing a private session or a video call. This will also avoid rumors going around the company.
State the issues clearly
Explain to the employee what actions have raised concern and how they affect the company. Give a clear explanation of what they did and how it affected the company's work. For instance, if they were late, explain to them at what time they arrived and how it affected the company, as it led to late deliveries of products or late submission of essential documents.
Discuss the changes they should make to their conduct
Let the employee know the changes they should make to improve their performance. Specify the steps and expectations that the company has to avoid any confusion. Let the employee know their value to the company and how they play an essential role in ensuring the company's functionalities. You can work with employees to work toward improving performance.
Give a timeframe for behavior change
No matter how good an employee can be, you cannot wait forever to change their conduct and improve their performance. Give the employee a timeframe of maybe two weeks or a month to change depending on the issue you are issuing the verbal warning. If they do not conduct themselves as expected within the given period, you can take further disciplinary actions like giving probation.
Support the change
To ensure that the employee meets the expected changes in performance and conduct within the given timeframe, you can provide additional help, like training and mentor sessions. You should also consider some unavoidable situations and try to fix a flexible timetable to make it easier for your employee to change and adjust. You should also pay attention to your employees' explanations as there are some essential details you may be missing concerning their behavior.
Even though you are issuing a verbal warning, ensure you maintain a calm, polite, and professional tone. Avoid bringing up other issues not concerning the behavior you are giving the verbal warning on. Ensure you keep a record of your verbal warnings and the employees' response that will be used for future reference, and send a follow-up email after a short period to check on their progress.