My company refuses to negotiate (part two)
This article is the second part of the one published under the same title.
Brief recall of the situation. One day, your HR Manager summons you to tell you he let you go. You just don’t understand and you were certainly not expecting this. Reasons given are as obscure as the situation as a whole and they have no foundations whatsoever for you.
You’re stunned, that only human.
At this point, several preconceived ideas may trap you even though they are true sometimes:
- My boss does not want to negotiate, I can’t do anything about it;
- I will win any legal action, for sure;
- My case is going to cost them dear!
- I am already outside the company so I can no longer negotiate.
Let’s overlook the last two for the purpose of this article.
My case is going to cost them dear!
When an employee is violently set aside from his company, being chocked and furious is only human and he may look forward a revenge by suing his company to court particularly if his firing looks unjustified in his eyes.
Unfortunately, this may lead to excessive or threatening or out-of-line words towards the company which allows some steam to be blown up but break the relationship supporting a future negotiation once the anger is gone.
It may be tempting to think in terms of “they have been violent with me so I’m going to make them suffer for what they’ve done to me”. You’re then driven by the “it’s going to cost them a lot” motivation.
Unfortunately, it so often happens that the violence in the separation process as well as the actual damages are poorly valued and compensated by professional courts. It is even worse for top managers or Directors.
Also, as sure as you may be of your good right, actual results in court and particularly with the French “Prud’hommes” court system is more random than on may think. Due to the fact, among others, that these jurisdictions are alternatively presided by employees and employers representatives.
As far as evaluating & pricing damages, and particularly the one of being unemployed, goes, the situation will be appraised by the judges at court hearing day and not when what you your employer to have done, has been done (your sacking).
In other words, you will get more if you’re unemployed at the time of the hearing than if you already have a job.
Of course, you’re not going to stay unemployed just for the sake of getting more money in court as judgement may come 2 years, and sometimes 3 years in case of appeal, after the facts (particularly in Paris).
At the end of the day one can wonder who paid the most in this situation. Is it the company, which may be condemned (or not) in 1 to 3 years-time? Or you who got yourself onto a negative process impacting our personal and professional life instead of looking for a negotiated & acceptable solution?
In other words, and despite the very real difficulties, it’s much better to avoid as much as possible the violent reactions pertaining to a separation. If the legal option is favored it’s better to give it some serious thoughts beforehand for it to appear as the best professional & personal option.
I am already outside the company so I can no longer negotiate.
Within the separation process it is quite frequent that the company will offer to the departing employee that he does not work during his notice period while still being paid. This translates that the company wishes to protect itself against negative attitude & actions from the fired employee. And that is legitimate as seen from the employer’s window.
For a sales representative for example, or any person in contact with customers, this allows to cut immediately the person from pending business cases and clients as he could, consciously or unconsciously, act against the company’s interests.
The question now becomes whether or not dialogue and negotiation are possible when the person is no longer within the company.
The impulsive reaction to seek revenge does not make dialogue easy and believing that no negotiation can take place if outside the company are positions which prevent or discount the possibilities of negotiation.