Firing Building Employees: Super Bad

Donald Trump makes it look so easy. “You’re fired,” he declares firmly, terminating an aspiring apprentice from the popular reality TV series, who will never be seen from again. 

In reality (and reality TV is not reality), the issue of termination is far more complex. While the vast majority of residential building employees are hardworking, ethical, and all-around assets to the communities they serve, one does occasionally come across the proverbial “bad apple.” 

Whether the issue is sloppy performance, foul attitude, or outright illegal behavior on the job, sometimes co-op or condo administrators have no choice but to terminate the employment of staff members. This process can be complicated when, say, a super (and possibly his or her family) lives in the building, or when a supers' union objects to the termination. Let’s take a look at the ins and outs of termination. 

Say a surveillance camera catches a super breaking into the penthouse apartment and making off with a laundry basket full of cash and jewelry. Pretty simple case, prospectively…you should fire him immediately, right? 

The answer, unexpectedly, is both yes and no.

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Comments

  • Firing a union employee is a daunting task but if you have given the employee numerous chances and tried to work with them it is always in your favor when the firing occurs. Unless the union representative is in someones pocket. Yes I can say speaking from experience this has happened, I have personally witnessed it and frankly I find it disgusting. I also find it saddening that sometimes the management likes to portray a story in the light that best suits them because they have first strike capability and are able to reach the board members before the employee gets wind of their schemes. They anticipate that the person they are firing will try and share their side of the story with the board. My advice to boards in general, always listen to both sides of the story, especially if a management company is pushing hard to get someone fired and it is not at your behest, they are clearly hiding something. Go ahead and fire everyone if that helps but don't let the wolves pull the wool over your eyes. Management companies or sometimes the manager themselves have their own agenda and they don't manage your property because they want to be charitable. Often enough they are mismanaging the buildings finances and you can call it poor decision making, or under the table dealings.