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Liars? Do not Apply Within
I have found myself on many occasions struggling to make the right decision when carers have done something they shouldn’t have.
I would say I’m a reasonable person. I make sure a thorough investigation is undertaken before a hearing is arranged and I always try and go into these meetings with an open mind, making sure the employee has a chance to speak and explain what happened in the first instance.
I feel strongly that our disciplinary procedure should be fairly and consistently applied, regardless of who the Carer is and how long they have worked for the organisation
With our valued employees sometimes it’s difficult to take disciplinary action. You don’t want to demoralise staff but you want to make them aware of their shortcomings and at all times you want staff members to function at their best.
Disciplinary action should be viewed not as a punishment but a correction. There should be some positivity around honest feedback, a second chance, and the opportunity to correct future behaviour.
At our meetings I ask the employee to take me through what happened step by step to make sure we take learning points from the situation. You can go away with the reassurance that the employee has admitted to making an error and is showing some contrition. You can feel at least satisfied that the matter will not occur again.
But what if the care worker lies?
What if you have warned them that lying during an investigation or disciplinary hearing will cause further problems for them?
Every worker in every sector has a duty to be honest to their employee. Dishonesty is included in the list of behaviours viewed a Gross misconduct.
But in this Industry honesty is absolutely critical. With a dispersed workforce everything they do throughout their working day is done alone. By themselves. With no one to corroborate what they did or didn’t do. You have to trust that every time they record their tasks and what they’ve done – you have to – HAVE TO – believe what they’ve said.
For me, once that trust and confidence has gone I can no longer believe anything they say or do. How can you move forward once you realise someone has lied despite being given opportunities to tell the truth? I don’t believe you can. There should be no second chances for those that lie.