Following the progressive discipline process

The proper steps to workplace discipline
By Leah Schatz
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 08/14/2019

Question: What is the accepted standard progression of steps for progressive discipline before reaching the point of dismissal? Are there exceptions to this process?

Answer: Progressive discipline is the process of using increasingly severe steps to correct inappropriate behaviour after an employee has been given a reasonable opportunity to do so. The underlying principle of sound progressive discipline is to use the most appropriate form to correct the type of behaviour that is inappropriate, given the employee’s past disciplinary record. 

Misconduct is deliberate behaviour, where an employee deliberately behaves in a manner he knows is inappropriate. In contrast, performance problems are often a result of lack of training, skills or motivation. Performance problems are often solved through coaching and mentoring, which is not disciplinary. Misconduct requires progressive discipline, and it sometimes leads to termination.