My CEO seems to have a personal vendetta against an employee I highly value. How do I respond to my CEO's request to terminate said employee?

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Hmm. Put the possible vendetta aside and put yourself in the Ceo 's shoe to see possible other reason that he might think differently then you about the employee's performance. Be clear about why you value this employee and tie it to what value this employee can or does bring to the Ceo's goals.

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I think this is really all you can do. Highlight their value and then leave the final decision with the CEO and trust their judgment. At least you will know you stood up for someone worth standing up for.

I’d just try and have an open conversation with him so that hopefully he can see more of your perspective about why you value this particular employee and feel that they are essential. Then maybe you’ll get some more insight about why he wants you to terminate this employee - I hope it’s more than just a vendetta if he expects you to take such serious action.

This is a tricky situation but maybe there is more to the story than you know. Maybe have a conversation with the CEO about his decision.

Are you a manager of this favored employee?

This happened to me in a previous company and there was no option, it was requested and done. The CEO explained to me how this employee’s behavior was not adhering to the company’s culture, although I saw it as a personal issue. It was a startup so not much I could have done for this employee.

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