|Issue No 64||28 July 2000|
Sacking Threat Was ‘Group Therapy’
A linen manufacture found to have wrongfully dismissed a worker admitted that the threat of the sack was a motivation technique that had been used 27 times over a ten year period on a single worker.
The amazing management strategy came to light during the successful claim by Effie Pyliotis against June Anne Manufacturing.
In its decision the Industrial Relations Commission found Pyliotis was sacked because she failed to apologise for her low productivity on a particular day. The IRC said this was not a valid reason for termination.
The Employer gave evidence that he had given notice of termination to the employee on 12 separate occasions for alleged bad performance but on each occasion before the notice expired her performance had improved an employment continued.
The Employer told the Commission he had given another employee notice of termination 27 times over a ten year period without actually sacking her.
The following is taken from transcript:
Commissioner: "[Your supervisor] says you used to give motivation speeches and part of that speech was if it's unsatisfactory you will be sacked, instant dismissal ...?
Employer: "That was group therapy".
Commissioner" "Yes, it's strange group therapy ... What I want to know is this, you said at one stage that you thought that terminating them was a bit of a prod to keep their production us. Is that correct?"
Employer" "Yes, I think that it's the sort of situation of using a word that not probably appropriate by using the word prod. It's a motivator."
The Commissioner said in its decision that except for the stautory cap of 26 weeks the employee would have received even more!
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005