Verbal Warnings

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about time of verbal warning and incident:

Do verbal warnings need to take place within a certain amount of time from when the latest occurrence happened? (State of Ca.)


Wary of Warnings

Dear Wary of Warnings:

I don’t think there is a general rule about this sort of thing. Possibly your State Labor Department could answer this question. I think warnings, verbal or written, should be deleted if after a year there would be no additional cause for them. It is generally allowed that those who are given written warnings may submit a refutation or apology that could be included in their files. Each organization has its own personnel policies and practices that fulfill or go beyond the law. Wouldn’t it be smart to consult your Human Resources and/or personnel department?

Possibly this sort of question is answered in a policy book. Then please do let us know what is the policy at your workplace. Perhaps I’m wrong, but I assume you are asking because you have been warned and you remember being warned before. More importantly, don’t allow a warning to cut off communication with your superior. Rather use this as a reason to talk about what caused it and how you might be more seen as a responsible employee. Ask yourself if your behavior is the kind that you would want of an employee if you owned the place. Also ask what have you done lately to earn a paycheck. Have you made suggestions on how to cut wasted supplies, cut rejects, prevent duplication and think of ways to improve quality and profits?Working is hard enough without worrying about warnings.

So I hope you do not allow warnings to sour you and to view the one who gave the warning as an enemy. Don’t grumble about it. That only starts a tape playing and replaying in your head that paints you as a victim. If the warning is unjustified, assert yourself to show why. If it is justified, determine to not allow a repeat of that behavior. Working together with hands, head, and heart takes and makes big WEGOS. In short, think about what you might do to make you and others deserve verbal praise instead of a verbal warning

William Gorden