A Verbal Warning Without Warning!

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about warning resulting from ignorance:

Can my company give me a verbal warning against a “fundamental requirement” that I didn’t know about or have knowledge about? There is nothing in my training that talks about the situation.

Signed, Blindsided

Dear Blindsided:

The most basic answer is, yes, your company can give you a verbal warning about anything that is viewed as problematic for work. A verbal warning is usually the lowest level of progressive discipline and implies it was the first time an event happened OR that there may be mitigation for what happened OR that your manager and/or others thought it was not intentional. However, it was enough of a concern that they want to be sure it doesn’t happen again.

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