Elements of a Discipline Program

An effective, comprehensive, and successful discipline program should contain the following elements:

Ensuring fair discipline. In deciding which approach you'd like to take, keep in mind that a system that is viewed as fair by the employees who must live under it is more likely to receive their support and cooperation. A fair policy also means that discipline must be applied consistently to all employees in an unbiased way. A fair policy does not mean a lax policy - discipline can be serious and even harsh, but fair. Fair discipline is also easier to defend and justify in court, should the need arise.

A basic foundation of fairness in discipline is:

In this philosophy, the purposes of discipline are to:

Systems designed to punish rather than educate are much more likely to be viewed by employees as arbitrary and unfair than those designed to educate and correct. That's in part because disciplinary systems designed to educate and correct are less likely to use the ultimate form of discipline - termination - until after an employee has been disciplined less severely in a series of progressive steps.