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Councils are sending managers on courses to learn how to sack troublesome employees without being taken to industri...
Councils are sending managers on courses to learn how to sack troublesome employees without being taken to industrial tribunals, reported The Observer (p6).

The day-long seminar, entitled How to Legally Dismiss Staff with Attittude Problems, is run by the American business training company Padgett-Thompson and costs£164.50 per person. Brochures for

the course, to be held in 13 locations around England next February, began circulating last week.

According to Padgett-Thompson, interest is already running high. 'We have taken a number of bookings', a sales representative said when approached by The Observer, posing as an interested employer. 'They include tyre-making companies, a biotechnology company, county councils and local authorities'. She declined to name them.

The trainers promise to show employers how to cover themselves legally, including 'a tried and tested technique for silencing employees who want to argue about being dismissed', and 'how to avoid

documentation slip-ups that can be used against you in a tribunal'. The brochure identifies four employee types which the course will equip managers to fire: the Chatterbox, the Shark, the Plot-ician and the Snoop.

A Unison spokeswoman said: 'We are very disturbed that local authorities should be signing up for such seminars. What the course purports to do is to teach people how to get round the law if an employee's face doesn't fit. This is the sledgehammer approach and it doesn't help anyone'.

John Stevens, of the Institute of Personnel Development, agreed: 'It's a provocative presentation of the subject which might attract people who see dismissal as the first option. We see it as the last option'.

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