Published on July 16th, 2019 by Alan L. Sklover
Question: Two weeks ago I received from my manager a document with the title “Performance Enhancement Plan.” It basically says that I am not performing satisfactorily (which is untrue), and unless I immediately improve drastically in vague ways (like “make me feel confident in you”) in 60 days, I could get terminated.
The last sentence of the Performance Enhancement Plan is this: “Failure to show immediate and sustained improvement while in this PEP may result in additional disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.”
I used your Model Memo to “push back” and was invited to a meeting where I was told by HR and my Manager not to worry because what I received is not a PIP, but instead is intended to show that I am trying to be a better employee. It seems the situation is stable for now. Should I trust that?
Answer: Dear Gretta: For over 20 years I’ve been heavily involved in helping employees, worldwide, address Performance Warning and Performance Improvement Plans (“PIPs”). Take my word for it, PLEEEZE: A PEP is a PIP is a PAP is a POP, so long as it says, one way or another, what your “PEP” says. Do not let trust their unwritten assurances; don’t forget their written, decidedly non-assuring paper trail.
Take it from me, your Performance Enhancement Plan is a PIP, and don’t believe for one moment that it is not. Whether called a PEP (Performance Enhancement Plan) or anything else, it is a THREAT to your livelihood.
Here are seven points to keep in mind:
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