If you have employees, sooner or later it is almost inevitable that you will be unhappy with how one of them is performing, or they may be upset with something the business has done.

If this happens, it is likely that you will have to have a difficult conversation with them.

This can be daunting, but handled in the proper way they can be a conversation that everyone agrees is constructive and in the best cases, can even be a positive thing, allowing you to help improve an employee’s performance or their happiness at work.

We can help advise and navigate you through these difficult conversations using the appropriate processes.

How we can help

Whether you are having disciplinary or performance issues with any employees, or you have received a grievance against your organisation – our employment experts are experienced in supporting clients through the correct procedures and also advising on performance improvement processes.

If you would like advice on your employment matter, please contact our Employment team directly and they would be happy to have an initial free obligation chat, to learn more and see how we can help.


If you have an employee who has done something inappropriate in the workplace, then you will likely need to look at following a disciplinary process with that employee.

The behaviour in question might be anything from a breach of your policies, to interacting unprofessionally with colleagues or customers, to something as serious as theft or harassment.

Depending on the severity of the conduct in question you may be justified in taking a range of action from issuing warnings to the employee in question, through to dismissal for the most serious issues.

But before getting to that, it is important for you to follow a very thorough disciplinary process. Failure to do so can leave your business open to very costly employment claims, even where you might otherwise have been within your rights to dismiss an employee.

If you have had disciplinary issues with an employee, we would encourage you to call our Employment team as early into the process as possible, and we can advise you on following a proper process, that will minimise the risk of claims against your business.


If one of your employees is failing to reach your expectations for the role they perform, then you ought to consider following a performance improvement process with them.

This process is different from a disciplinary process. A disciplinary process is followed with employees whose behaviour is inappropriate. A performance improvement process is for those employees who haven’t done anything wrong, but who aren’t performing at the level you’d hoped.

A performance improvement process looks to ensure that the employee has everything they need to be successful in their role and then sets targets for them to improve over a period of time. The hope is that they reach the levels you expect of them, but if after time this is not possible, a properly followed process does allow you to remove that employee from your business.

If you are struggling with an underperforming team member, we can advise you on how to follow a performance improvement process with the hope of turning things around.


A grievance process is something that is started by the employee and not by you. It is typically a formal complaint made by your employee about something to do with their working conditions, something the business is failing to do, or a decision the business may have made.

If you receive a grievance, you will need to follow a particular process in order to properly respond to it. Failure to do this could give the employee in question a claim against the business, so it is important to treat any grievance seriously.

If you have received a grievance from one of your employees, we can talk you through the best way to respond.

Recognised and recommended

Our Employment team are recognised in The Legal 500 UK for “a friendly yet extremely professional attitude with 100% commitment to do the best for its clients.”

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