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I Am An Entrepreneur. I Have Employed My Friend Thinking He Will Be A Good Support. However, It Turned Out That We Have Different Ideas And Working Style. How Do I End The Relationship Smoothly Without Hurting The Relationship?

He is very humble and nice. He helped me out during our college days. However, he is very lazy and laid back. He has no wish to work. He still does not expect to be suspended as he is my friend. Now that I have got smarter employees, I would like to replace the old ones who aren’t as good. How should I tell my friend that he has caused a lot of disruptions in the office and thus I cannot let him work here for much longer

Swati Hirey, CEO - Source Solution Inc.

"Emotions have no place in business, unless you do business with them”- Friedrich Durrenmatt. It is often entrepreneurs find themselves grappling with the issue of a friend who they hired and is not delivering. Having a difficult conversation specially with a friend is always difficult, but responsibility of your business needs to be taken since the onus lies with you. I suggest you be open to your friend and tell her/him that it is not working out as planned and clearly you both are looking for different things. Express genuinely that you care for the friendship and would like to ensure that the relationship is not affected if you part ways. Do what is right & fair to your organization. Communicate clearly that it is not personal and you would want to continue being friends. If she/he is your true friends he/she will surely understand & respect your decision. Make it easier for the friend to maintain his/her dignity and give them a way out so they dont feel compromised. But as mentioned it is critical for you to deal with this head on and avoiding it will only cause more unhappiness and eventually affect your friendship that you are trying to protect. If managed well the friend will respect and value your friendship more.

Manbir Kaur, Executive & Leadership Coach

Did you come across the most used breakup line: “It is not you, it’s me”? This may be a good way to have an amicable breakup, keeping the other person in high spirits by assuming the blame for the breakup on your own self. For a lesser damage to the relationship, I suggest you start a conversation with this approach. You sincerely believe that your friend has the best of your interests in his mind. Acknowledge that you are not always able to appreciate his point of view. Express that you value your friendship much more than the success. You see that the conflicts that arise on a daily basis are leaving a mark on yourself and your friendship. Communicate clearly you hope to continue to be friends as usual and return to the older ways.

Manish Puri, Business Consultant & Coach

I am so glad that we got an opportunity to work together. This opportunity has brought about my understanding of you as my friend in a deeper manner. I am a believer of the famous saying- “ familiarity breeds contempt” and since I value our friendship more than anything else, I suggest that we keep it at that only and hence disassociate professionally. I want us to flourish as friends always & am sure this decision will go a long way towards creating this wonderful reality.

MMH Beg, Head-Human Resources, NEC India

Breaking up is tough, even when you know it is necessary. I assume this relationship must have started without having an exit plan. But still there is a way to do it without hurting anyone’s feeling. You may not want to end the partnership in the heat of the moment. Think of few things that you appreciate about him and extend the praise. Communicate the reason for the break up clearly. Talk about what is wrong and why the relationship can’t move forward. Be honest but not abrasive. Operate from a place of mutual fairness. Be kind and generous. Work out a severance package to avoid future litigation.