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If you've charged your employee with gross insubordination, here's what you need to know about aggravating factors

by , 21 August 2014
If you charge your employee with gross insubordination, there's a high chance you'll dismiss him. This is, after all, the highest form of employee disrespect.

While this is the case, the process must be fair.

In terms of labour law, you and your employee must get a chance to influence the Chairperson's decision before he decides what penalty to impose. Today we'll focus on what you (the employer) must do to influence the Chairperson's verdict.

During the disciplinary hearing, the person who's bringing the charge on your behalf must state any aggravating factors or circumstances. These make your employee's offence more serious and deserving of the harshest sanction - dismissal.

But what do aggravating factors include? Read on to find out so you'll know what to do when you've charged your employee with gross insubordination.

 
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Know the difference between insubordination, gross insubordination and insolence

There's a fine line between insubordination, gross insubordination and insolence of an employee. Do you know the difference? How would you discipline an employee in each instance? If you get it wrong you could lose at the CCMA!

Find out how to discipline in each case so it doesn't land up costing you!


 
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When dealing with a gross insubordination case, make sure you know about aggravating factors
 

Aggravating factors include:
 

  • Committing the offence in the presence of other employees, colleagues, clients or superiors.
 
  • The level of aggression, threat or intimidation accompanying the refusal.
 
  • Previous deliberate undermining of your authority and previous disciplinary action for insolence or insubordination.
 
  • No reasonable or justifiable explanation for the refusal.
 
  • The fact that your employee was persistent in his refusal.
 
  • The fact that the refusal was so severe it irreparably destroyed the trust relationship.

Aggravating factors are the final nail in the coffin so to speak. They'll help ensure the Chairperson rules in your favour.

Knowing about them will help ensure you handle a gross insubordination case correctly.

PS: For more information on gross insubordination, get your copy of The Insubordination Toolkit: How to deal with insubordination, gross insubordination and insolence in the workplace today.

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