Firing/ Discipline interview

MC Martinez, Assistant Store Manager, TJ MAXX companies


  1. What is your process of steps to take before firing an employee?
    1. It depends on the infraction made. We have a certain process for firing and most times we give verbal warnings, two written warnings, then dismissal. In other, more severe instances, we will move straight to dismissal.
    2. If we suspect certain behavior like dishonesty and stealing is involved then we have to create a file documenting the behavior and create a case for dismissal. If this happens then we get in contact with our loss prevention manager to follow the case.


  1. Who else is involved during the firing process? 

Depending on the situation, we may have the store manager, myself, a person from HR, the loss prevention manager, or the district manager.


  1. How many steps are involved from first offense to dismissal?

Depends on the offense, it could be straight to dismissal or if we want to give the employee a chance to correct the behavior then usually we have at least three steps: verbal warning, written warning, written warning, then dismissal.


  1. What does your disciplinary plan usually look like?

Verbal warning, written warning, 2nd written warning, termination, or if you have three written warnings for behavior (even if they are separate issues) then it’s a termination.


  1. Do you collect anything from the employee before termination?

Name badge, associate discount card, any vacation is paid out and that week’s paycheck.


  1. Do you offer warnings before disciplinary action or dismissal is taken?

Yes, one verbal and two written warnings, unless the infraction falls into immediate termination.


  1. If disciplining or firing someone goes wrong, or the employee responds inappropriately, how would you handle that?

If we suspect that the employee may be violent, we try to think ahead and have other help present, whether it be the police or other management or HR.


  1. Do you give the employee an opportunity to “defend themselves”? Do you offer second chances based on what they say?

No, we call this whole process corrective action. We as management help the employee come up with an action plan and try to help them. After establishing a plan with an employee and getting their agreement to try to correct the behavior, if we still have issues then we move forward as described from previous questions.


  1. After firing an employee, how do your other employees typically respond?

If usually effects them in some way where these employees have been affected by this problematic employee. They are usually happier since we have handled the issue.


  1. After disciplinary action is taken or someone is fired, how do you motivate your other employees? How do you keep your other employees accountable?

We have an open door policy at our stores. If any employee has questions or issues, he or she is welcome to come in and discuss the issue with management. A lot of times this is how we are able to address problems with other employees. We don’t promote tattling but we do expect professional behavior.

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Reflective Journal Week 6

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Ethics committees

In this weeks unit we discussed what makes up an ethics committee, who usually plays an active role on the committee and what is expected of the committee. I found it interesting that although ethics committees from each organization can do things differently, most meet a few times a year to discuss goals and expectations for the year and also go over scenarios that may be similar to what they may encounter when the hospital calls them in to discuss a case. The ethics committee is required to perform its due diligence, ask the correct questions, perform the necessary interviews, and keep a global perspective of the situation in order to make a recommendation to the caregiver team. I also found it interesting that the ethics committee has no power, its just a team that attempts to put all the pieces together to make an ethical decision in order to support the patient, the healthcare team, and the hospital.

The team activities discussed ethical dilemmas seen within healthcare and a scenario to go over as if we were an ethics committee. It was good practice to discuss this as a team and see different perspectives come together. We all arrived at the same decision but each of us noticed something different and we were able to keep a global approach to the situation. The ethics dilemmas showed me how many ethics problems there may be out there. It helped me to further realize that I for sure will take part in these discussions often within my profession.

This week’s unit has helped me be more ethically sensitive. As a nurse I encounter situations very often that may require more discussion and I feel more comfortable talking to my manager and even asking if we need an ethics committee to review certain cases. Sometimes I may face a circumstance where my own values may be challenged. Its up to me to speak up when I feel uncomfortable with a decision and voice my concern for the issue.

I enjoyed learning this week’s content. It was good to have a discussion about ethical decisions and the reasoning behind the decision we made. It was also good to understand more about what an ethics committee does and how they can be a resource and support to my position as a nurse.

Performance Appraisal interview 2

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Performance Appraisal Interview


I interviewed Rick Fernelius, a former supervisor at Stouffer’s.


  1. What criteria scale do you use for performance appraisals?

We had three scales: needs improvement, satisfactory, and above average.


  1. How long do your evaluations typically last?

The interview usually lasts 15-20 mimutes.


  1. Do you include peer evaluations? Why or why not?

No I didn’t. The team I have works around each other often and they report anything to me. We have a good sense of open communication so I don’t feel it’s necessary.


  1. How frequently do you hold performance appraisals?

The protocol for Stouffer’s is once a year. Now if something comes up its easier to address it and correct it then and allow the employee to change behavior.


  1. How do your performance appraisals tie into determining salary raises for your employees?

Appraisals tie directly into raises for employees. I follow a strict protocol from Nestle Corporation when it comes to the appraisal.


  1. Do you provide an opportunity for employees to express concerns about their performance or growth prior to beginning a formal evaluation?

Yes, I can informally meet with employees if anything is reported or I see a need for correcting anything.


  1. Do you feel like your current protocol for performance appraisals have led to stronger relationships between you and your employees?

No I don’t. Although I follow the protocol, I don’t see a stronger relationship coming from just that. 


  1. How do you organize your performance appraisals with so many employees?

Since my team is small, I only had to do three appraisals a year.


  1. What are some positive outcomes you see from conducting performance appraisals?

Part of appraisals is setting goals with these employees. I would help each of my teammates set goals and it was good to see these individuals grow within the company.


  1. Are there any negative outcomes you see from conducting performance appraisals?

Sometimes there are individuals who were unhappy with their appraisals. This would sometimes effect performance and I’d have to work extra hard to be a better support to the individual.


  1. What role does goal setting and accomplishment play when it comes to evaluating your employees’ performance?

Goal setting is very important to Nestle. We want to see people setting goals, stretching themselves, and improving year after year. There is always something we can work on.

  1. How do you handle under-performing or problematic employees?

It’s important to address a problem quickly. Meeting with the individual, possibly doing a write up, and forming a corrective action plan is how I would usually handle a meeting like this.

 It was interesting to see the differences and similarities between healthcare performance appraisals and the way they do it at this organization. Most of the elements were similar but I found it interesting how the policy for appraisals wanted people in each performance range. I’m not sure it is the same with healthcare but I found it interesting.

Performance Appraisal Interview

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Performance Appraisal Interview Questions


I interviewed Nadine Fernelius. She works at Mtn. View Hospital. She was the E.D. unit manager for 8 years.


  1. What criteria scale do you use for performance appraisals?

Satisfactory, needs improvement, above average, excellent


  1. How long do your evaluations typically last?

15- 20 minutes


  1. Do you include peer evaluations? Why or why not?

Yes, I would do them myself and also used a monkey survey to establish peer information to help with the appraisal.


  1. How frequently do you hold performance appraisals?

Just once a year, but I feel like they should be done more often to get feedback more often. Especially new nurses coming into the unit, they need more frequent feedback than once a year.


  1. How do your performance appraisals tie into determining salary raises for your employees?

Performance appraisals weighed heavily on salary raises with the workers on the unit. If the worker needs improvement, I would sit down and make an improvement plan with the worker. The bottom line salary adjustment was determined by HR.


  1. Do you provide an opportunity for employees to express concerns about their performance or growth prior to beginning a formal evaluation?

Yes, we print off an evaluation and have the worker perform a self-evaluation. If they have any questions or concerns I arrange a meeting before having the formal evaluation.


  1. Do you feel like your current protocol for performance appraisals have lead to stronger relationships between you and your employees?

Yes, because it is nice to sit down with each employee and have a productive conversation. It’s important to establish an open line of communication and have the employee feel comfortable with coming to me with questions. I just wish we would do it more often in our organization.


  1. How do you organize your performance appraisals with so many employees?

Since we do them once a year, I would take 3 weeks to focus on appraisals. I was willing to come in early, or accommodate to their schedules in order to get it done.


  1. What are some positive outcomes you see from conducting performance appraisals?

Anonymous peer reviews were great. It was a great motivator for change or for those doing well. It created a greater bond between the team.


  1. Are there any negative outcomes you see from conducting performance appraisals?

There were a few instances where people who had bad reviews who were not pleased. If there were several peer reviews who said the same about another person then in was an indicator that we needed to look more into a possible corrective action. But we use the reviews to help each other out, gain a better understanding of how we can come together as a team.


  1. What role does goal setting and accomplishment play when it comes to evaluating your employees’ performance?

Huge! Whether it is department goals, personal goals, and hospital goals, they all play an important role in measuring performance, holding people accountable and fostering continuous improvement.


  1. How do you handle under-performing or problematic employees?

Frequent visits. I help them set up a performance improvement project with a time frame. Set goals with them and have a follow-up evaluation. Give them time to improve and show that they want to improve and perform better. It’s also important to give them help and allow multiple nurse leaders help the worker succeed, evaluate them, and be a resource to them.


The interview gave me good insight to how a manager thinks before and during these appraisal interviews. It was also good to talk to her about disciplinary action. A lot of things we discussed we also covered in our group discussions and lecture but the one thing that she mentioned that I like is that when setting up appraisal interviews she said she took them very seriously. She said, “I would make sure to be flexible with my schedule to accommodate my employees. If I needed to come in early to work to interview someone coming off of a graveyard shift or stay late to meet after a day shift then I did it. I tried to be respectful of everyone’s time and mindful of the appraisal as well. This is their livelihood, and people look forward to getting raises.”


Reflective Journal Week 5

This week I learned about how to do performance appraisals and deal with problematic employees. This is a big part of being a leader as those who work for you need consistent direction, motivation and feedback. Having frequent check-ins with workers helps them to know if they are being a productive employee. This is an opportunity to discuss organizational goals, unit goals, and personal goals with each employee and set the expectation for performance reviews. Check-ins help the employee know if they are on track or need to focus on areas of improvement. 

I feel like having consistent communication with your employees is crucial to correct management. It helps each worker feel at ease, knowing you will listen to and act on their concerns, and they will get feedback on how to improve. This method takes out any argument when it comes to performance appraisals. Workers will already know where they stand, what habits and skills they are good at, and also what they can focus on to improve. Working as teams to come up with questions was a good activity in order to perform a proper interview on someone who does performance appraisals and disciplinary action. I feel like the questions we came up with will help each of us get a better idea of how someone in that position goes about doing performance appraisals.

In my current position we interview with unit leadership once a quarter. I will take this time to ask for any feedback on improvements I can make and also ask how I can be a better team player. I will also continue to learn from my leaders and not how they handle crucial conversations with employees.

The material we covered this week was very beneficial. It has helped me realize how different a nurse leader has to think, what information they have to verify in order to go forward with any action, whether good or bad to correct or motivate each individual. I also realized how closely they have to work with HR personnel as a lot of the situations they have to take care of involve keeping HR in the loop or closely involved.

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Week 4 Reflection

1. What did you actually learned from the unit. I learned quite a bit from this unit. It was good to do the team building activities and get to know my team. It was great to hear their insight and though process as we worked through each activity. I can see how sometimes its hard to work as a team, especially if you may have a person with strong opinions (My team members were not this way thankfully). But looking forward I see how important it is to have a common vision and common goals to help drive us to work together for the same common outcomes.

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why? No, it did not change my mind on the subject. Working on projects as a team always has pros and cons but with expectations set early then everyone can govern themselves appropriately. I enjoys hearing other peers observations and opinions. It helps me learn and see things from a different perspective.

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice. We will always be working in some form of team in healthcare. These teams help us stay safe, keep our patients safe and hopefully help each of a progress while improving the outcomes of our patients. Its important to use clear communication and show mutual respect to gain the confidence of the members of your team.

4. You personal feelings about the material covered. I enjoyed this week’s activities and interview. The interview helped me see the mindset of a manager outside of healthcare and realize that there are a lot of similarities across the board when it comes to a professional interview. I also liked working with my team to accomplish the activities for our group learning activity. It was good to hear from each person in the group, to hear their input for each activity, and get to know them better. 

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Hiring Interview

I interviewed a Store Manager of a TJ MAXX in regards to the preparation and expectations for hiring interviews. The store manager is Tiffany Fernelius, yes she is my wife but given her position and how often she does hiring interviews of various positions, whether in management or entry level, she has a lot of experience. Here are the questions I asked:

  1. What is your process for selecting individuals to interview? I work closely with my District Manager. He does some research on the potential candidates like their work history, how long they have been in a particular position, what professional accomplishments have they made. He is the first interview. From the interviews he performs, he recommends the top 3 that he feels are qualified and will be a good fit. I then go through my interview process with them by asking what positive results they have brought to their position or company. I also ask them some previously selected questions that will help me gauge their qualifications.
  2. What are important things you look for on a resume? Work history, positions held, credible references. One page resume, has to be neat and in order.
  3. How carefully do you review a resume before interviewing a candidate? I spend a few minutes looking over each resume before the interview to get familiar again with the candidate. Its important to me to help them feel comfortable and that I’ve done research on them as well.
  4. What are you looking for when you reach out to the interviewee’s references? Job description, team player, Can they lead and guide a team, punctuality with being on time to work and also for task deadlines. I also ask if the company they work for would rehire the candidate.
  5. Do you ask potential coworkers, HR, or other leadership to be in the interview with you? Occasionally, but I feel its important to involve my peers to get a different perspective and create a dialogue on who is the best candidate.
  6. Do you usually have a pretty good idea about whether or not you would like to hire an individual as soon as the interview is over? Yes, based on the questions and responses from the candidate I can usually tell if they will be a good fit for our team or not.
  7. Do you appreciate it when individuals follow up with you after an interview? No, after the interview I usually will let them know that they will hear from us by a certain day if we want to offer them a position. Although it shows interest, I am very busy with other responsibilities with my job.
  8. How long do your interviews last? Usually an hour. I feel that amount of time will help me adequately make a decision on if I would like to offer them a position or not.
  9. Are there any major red flags you keep an eye out for during an interview? If they seem distracted in the interview. If they can’t back up what they have said with examples in their professional history.
  10. How important is it to you that the interviewee ask you questions? What kind of questions do you hope they ask? I hope they know about and have done research about our company. I like to hear about growth opportunity questions, I tells me they want to be invested in their position and may want to stay around for growth and development.
  11. What qualities and skills do you look for in every interviewee? Good communication, motivated, has the ability to lead and influence others to achieve goals that fall in line with our company’s vision, can work well easily with the public and has good critical thinking and problem solving skills.
  12. What impresses you most about a potential employee? First impressions are important. If they can maintain eye contact, come dressed appropriately, and have a conversation with me that seems easy to have, then that is very impressive.


It was a good experience to interview a person outside of healthcare and realize that they look for similar qualities and attributes in future employees. I was also surprised by some of the answers that were given. I expected the manager to want a follow-up phone call but after an explanation, it made sense why it didn’t really matter. 

Summary- It was good practice this week to put used our questions from last week to get a better idea of how other management in different corporations value the interview process and what they look for when they are interview candidates.

Reflective journal Week 3

This week I learned about the hiring process. There were several aspects about the hiring process that was familiar with but it takes certain steps in order to perform a successful interview. A successful interview involves several people including HR, coworkers, and other leadership. It also involves having a set of questions (many behavioral based) prepared before the interview in order to draw out the characteristics you are looking for in a new employee. Its important to set the criteria for what you may be looking for in candidates as well.

Working with our group this week we discussed two candidates for a position and some questions to ask a person who does hiring. It was good to discuss and explore as a group. I feel that working together as a team brings a variety of perspectives and helps each of us through the thought process on how to select the best candidate. Discussing the questions to ask a hiring manager was good as well to get a comprehensive approach to whats good practice for those who do a  lot of hiring.

The information we covered in this weeks discussion will be helpful to me if I ever conduct and interview in the future, or if I get asked to help out with one. Its also good information for myself for one who will most likely interview for various positions in my future. 

As I have interview for various positions in my professional career I can see the importance of both interviewers and interviewees being prepared for the interview process. An interviewer needs to be prepared in order to remain professional and be able to properly evaluate and select the right candidate for the needed job position.

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Characteristics of leaders

1.       Leadership requires personal mastery – Nurses demonstrate leadership when they show competence and mastery in the tasks they perform. Nurses are deemed competent by means of a license to practice nursing (NLN 2010).

2.       Leadership is about values – Nurses show leadership through strong values such as respect, trust, and openness.

3.       Leadership is about service –Nurses lead through giving service to those around them. Both to patients and coworkers. No task is above them as they work hand in hand with those around them.

4.       Leadership is about people and relationships – Nurses work hard to be friendly and make others feel important and needed. As a leader, establishing good relationships with those around them will promote a culture of unity and teamwork.

5.       Leadership is contextual – There is a time and a place for all things. A nurse leader needs to be able to read the situation and act accordingly.

6.       Leadership is about the management of meaning – Nurse leaders work to keep the team focused on attainable goals. Leaders help motivate and facilitate opportunities for growth.

7.       Leadership is about balance – Nurse leaders understand that striving to live a balanced life at work and at home is important for a healthy unit and healthy coworkers.

8.       Leadership is about continuous learning and improvement – Nurse leaders engage in continuous learning and understand that they don’t know everything and are always looking to learn and grow.

9.       Leadership is about effective decision making – Nurse leaders are trained to step up and make important decisions when they need to be made. They take all options into account and strive to make sound decisions.

10.   Leadership is a political process – Nurse leaders understand they have workers below them and management above them. They strive to balance the demands from coworkers and management and strive to keep goals and values aligned with the vision of the organization.

11.   Leadership is about modeling – Nurse leaders are exemplary in their actions and behavior.

12.   Leadership is about integrity –  Nurse leaders maintain integrity by keeping their word, using effective communication, and enforcing rules and policies.

Week 2 reflection

This week through the readings, lecture, and group activities we learned about various types of leadership styles. The articles I read talked about Laissez-faire leadership- one who wants the job done isn’t concerned with how its done. An autocratic leader is one who has absolute power, one who is involved in every detail and the one who makes all the decisions. A democratic leader is one who leads by majority vote and tries to do good by the majority. I liked reading about the influential and transitional leader who strives to motivate and inspire their people of influence to do good. They are also flexible in how they make their decisions and see that leadership demands growth and improvement just like any other position.

I enjoyed our team activity this week as we discussed several leaders. I asked the question to our team about what makes a leader. Is it the amount of people they influenced? Was it the goals they accomplished? Was it the time period in which they were influential? I also read that being a leader doesn’t necessarily mean that you have a position of higher ranking, its the ability to bring people together to accomplish goals. Its the ability to instill a vision into people in order to be successful as a group.

For myself, being a leader is being a friend. Its knowing each person and being able to help them reach their personal goals as well as help them see the vision of company goals. I’ve had several leaders in my personal and professional experience and the great leaders expect your best effort every day. They also inspire you, correct you, help you along the way, and give you confidence in your work and in approaching them with questions or concerns. I look forward to learning and growing as a leader or influential person.

JOHN MAXWELL's quote regarding the Leadership.