Employees and their cases

Date: September 4th, 2011
Author: Daniel Lublin
Publication: Metro

Some people just love to lose

“The pen is mightier than the sword” – Edward Bulwer-Lytton
Too often employees ruin their own perfectly good cases.  Mostly, these employees fail to pick their battles, especially with their own lawyers.  Here are the various types of “losers” and the reasons why they just love to fail:
The “penny pincher” – they want substantially more from a lawyer than what they are willing to pay for.  They will invest more time searching for a free lawyer than had they just agreed to pay for a good one from the outset.  They will always argue over getting the last penny in any deal, which ironically will cost them more in the long run.
The “know it all” – they have a well strategized plan about how they will win their case.  The problem is that they are often wrong and they are never willing to admit it.   They will listen to their lawyers but as soon as they do not get the answer they want to hear, they will take a course of action that will inevitably make their case harder to settle.
The “story tellers” – they tell fabulous stories about their cases, except that these stories are always far from the truth.  They will convince themselves that they have a great case, worth many millions of dollars and that their employers will open their wallets to silence their claims.  The problem is that if their employers and even their own lawyers do not believe them, a judge almost never will either.
The “bully” – They are so used to getting away with mischief, they can never foresee their behaviour catching up with them.  However, when it eventually does (and it always will) the bully falls harder than anyone.  They get little sympathy from ex-employers and even less from the judges.
The “napoleon” – This class of employees will fight for just about everything.  They will challenge performance reviews, workplace policies, hiring decisions and most definitely they will challenge firing decisions.  They will invest more time and energy in court than had they just moved on and found another job.  However, they are great clients because I often see them more than once.