To say it’s not an easy situation is an understatement, especially if your company doesn’t have specific guidelines on what the appropriate succeeding actions should be. In this case, deciding on how to deal with the situation falls solely on your shoulders, possibly a highly confusing moment. Choosing termination for problem employees would be simple but what if one of your promising employees tested positive? Here are important tips to heed in case you find yourself in this position.
- Have a retest.
There are cases when drug tests can result in a false positive. This can happen due to several factors that may affect the outcome, depending on the method used. Experts recommend when retesting, the second one should be the same as the first. For example, if the employee was asked to take a hair drug test, then the second test should be the same hair drug test but done in a professional lab for this instance. Results should be sent to professionals for the final evaluation. To prevent inaccurate results, ensure to follow directions when conducting the test and use only high-quality drug testing kits.
- Review company policies and legalities.
Should the second test return positive as well, go through the company’s mandate on such matters. The firm may have specific guidelines or set rules for this kind of situation that should be followed. Depending on how you want the circumstances to be handled, company policies might make determining what action steps to pursue easier for you. Take caution when you do so by examining legalities. If the necessary measures are unpleasant for the employee, you can expect the individual to react negatively like filing a case against any consequence you’ll give out. You don’t want to be caught in the middle of a legal battle for simply following your firm’s procedures.
- Study the case.
What kind of drug did the individual test positive for? Would its immediate effects manifest such that the person could already be dangerous to others? When and where could it have been taken? If your employee doesn’t hold any safety- or security-related position, termination could be too drastic. Let’s say the worker holds a vital role in a project and removing this person from the company too soon would cause too many issues for the team and the company. What other options are viable? As a leader, you also need to consider how any decision would impact the rest of the team and, in effect, the rest of the firm.
- Suggest ways the company could help.
Ask whether the firm is affiliated with an organization able to provide the appropriate aid for drug users or has an in-house program. If none of these options are available, seek advice regarding other means of support from the employer to help the worker resolve this health issue.
- Respect the employee’s right to privacy.
Leaders should be concerned with the overall well-being of their team members and other subordinates. Needless practices which would hinder one another from improving present conditions, such as gossiping, should be highly discouraged and prevented. While the individual is at fault for willfully committing a health-degrading, illegal act, this person still needs to be protected from public discredit. It’s a private matter that should be kept between people concerned.