My STL/HR-ETL won't let me write someone up.

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Jan 28, 2012
Hello all. I have had an ongoing issue with a team member who consistently shows disrespect towards team members and other team leaders. I have attempted to speak to the team member about his attitude and even attempted to write him up several times when he cursed at another team member. However, the STL and HR-ETL in my store find this team member to be simply amazing and won't let anyone do any type of corrective action with this particular team member. What should I do? Who should I talk to? I don't have any support from my STL/HR-ETL. This team members' verbal abusiveness has not been a one time thing, and it's time for his actions to be disciplined. Any thoughts?
are you a tl? why are you asking permission to coach someone?

just do it. document it. get a statement from the person that is being abused or disrepected to attach to it. email the copy to hr. done.
also, print yourself a hard copy to keep just in case it gets "lost" or mysteriously "disappears" from the binder, or heaven forbid, mysite crashes and you lose everything.

keep documenting. after the 2nd occurance, type up a counseling. submit it to your hr, cc the etl and stl. follow up. if they still refuse, tell them you are going to contact your hrbp and call the hotline. usually that will get them to concur. but if they don't, follow up with the hrbp/dtl. but you need to make sure this is blatant harassment toward a tm, not just dropping the f bomb in front of other team members. otherwise, my entire building would be termed. :D
Actually, it's not possible to give someone correction action without the ETL HR or STL signing it, so I can see where this poster is coming from. Also, it's not allowed for TL's to go above the ETL HR or STL, so HRBP's, DTL's are not an option, those are resources for the ETL HR & STL only, TL's doing so would be going against protocol. ER hotline or the Let Us Know Program would be possible options I guess, but really those should be reserved for the reason they are intended, which is to protect TM's from harassment or discrimination in the workplace. Target no longer provides hourly team members with the erdr (employee relation district resource) - meaning the person above the Hr Mgr & the STL. I would suggest continuing to have verbal conversations with this TM, they will eventually get the point. Also, document..document..document as dek067 says, they will eventually have to take your side and sign the CA if there is enough evidence to convict so to speak
The reason they will not let you do this is simple - as a TL you need an ETL/STL to sign off on a counseling. (a "write up") They do not agree that this situation warrants a counseling, and therefore they do not want to sign off.

You are thinking of this as them trying to take away your authority, but the problem is that you have zero authority to issue a counseling. Only an ETL or above has that authority. When a TL does a counseling they are simply reporting the offense. TLs do *not* have the authority to approve a counseling in any way, shape, or form.

So basically in regards to counseling this is the way it works:

ETLs - Issue the counseling (i.e. the official paperwork, or actually signing it if they delegate the writing to you), approve the counseling, and decide what consequences the counseling entails.

TLs - Report the issue to an ETL for them to consider issuing a counseling, deliver the counseling verbally should the ETLs decide that is best

As a TL, you have done your job by reporting the issue. The ETL involved has decided not to approve a counseling.

You seem to think that you have the authority to approve/issue the counseling by yourself and the ETLs are taking this authority away from you. In fact, you do not technically have this authority. No TL does. Trying to take this to a higher level is only going to get you in to trouble, and possibly even a write up your self for insubordination.

And yes, as I say this as a fellow TL. Drop the matter before your ETLs see you as needing corrective action.

One more thing, just an FYI in case you are thinking of trying to do this - a TL issuing a counseling without an ETL signing off on it is a termable offense for a TL. Whatever you do, don't go behind your ETLs back and try to do a counseling without approval. You can and will get termed for it. The reason Target has this rule is - TL's do not have the training for all HR laws like your ETLHR does. All it would take is a TL doing a corrective action for the wrong reasons, (i.e. something in violation of your states/federal labor laws that the TL was not aware of) and the next thing you know Target has a multi-million dollar lawsuit.

A "coaching" is a totally different thing, and you can do this by your self. The problem is, it has zero power behind it.

Most TMs think that when we as TLs do a "coaching" without an ETL it is some dire thing. The fact is, a coaching is *not* an official corrective action that has any official negative consequences for a TM. I can sit around and "coach" a TM every day for months - that TM will still have a job, and will not suffer any negative consequences until when and if an ETL decides it should become a counseling. A coaching is simply generating a paper trail for your ETLs to use as "evidence" against a TM to justify a counseling. But a coaching by its self does not impact a TMs job.
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The Hotline was made for situations like this. Don't threaten your ETL/STL with a call, that will only land you in hot water, and don't call the hotline saying they won't do anyting about it because obviously they will know it's you.

What I would do is when/if you witness the verbal or abuse or if he does it to you(optimal situation), call the hotline on the actual team member. The hotline will then get your ETL's butts in gear to take care of it. Trust me there is nothing scary to an ETL than a bad hotline call. One bad turn out from a hotline call can easily put a brick wall in their career path that is sometimes unpassable.
cuss out the team member and humiliate him at huddle. Obtain is phone number from his personal info file and then give him harrassing phone calls when he's away from work. If you do it right he will realize how his actions effect others. And then call the hotline and spill your guts about your Stl and Etl-hr. Then get a stencil of the target logo, and stencil a big bright white target on the back of your work shirts!!!
Don't call hot line. It could conflict between you & tm. But, document events, still report to Stl or hr etl on each event.
You also need to keep in mind that there is a possibility that your ETLs are already taking corrective action themselves, and therefore there is no need for you to get involved at this point. Some stores will tell TLs about ongoing corrective actions against TMs, while some stores (like mine) will not share corrective action information with TLs. Your store may have ETLs like mine that don't believe TLs should be told about confidential corrective action that is ongoing against TMs.

In other words, this TM may already be getting counselings from an ETL, but they can't tell you that because it is confidential - so all they can do is tell you to drop it.

I think the bigger problem is that you are using the wrong keywords as well. Lack of "Respect" is not by its self a violation of any rule. You might think that a TM deserves a write up because they don't say "hello, how are you doing today?" every morning which you find respectful. That doesn't mean it is a write up offense or that your ETLs will agree. You need to tell us a little more about what exactly the "respect" problem is that you are talking about. You told us about an instance of cussing out a TM, but what exactly is the "respect" issue? That is also probably killing your case with the ETLs.
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It's part of a TLs core roles to write and issue CCA's so technically they do have authority to issue a counseling. They have to be approved by the ETL-HR beforehand and that includes if another ETL wants to issue a counseling.
It's part of a TLs core roles to write and issue CCA's so technically they do have authority to issue a counseling. They have to be approved by the ETL-HR beforehand and that includes if another ETL wants to issue a counseling.

That's a THREE YEAR thread revival. Why?
Sounds odd to me. I have placed tm's on correctives for cussing. There is a specific term for it, i cant think of it right now. The only reason they might be holding off on this is the tm might be considered a protected class, the behavior might be because of a disability, etc. It is hard to performance out protected class team members. Too many legal issues.
Um @state of target everything you said is so not true, at least at my store. When we coach tm especially on performance we are doing so so that we have enough documentation to eventually write tm up. That is why "express the consequences" is at the bottom of the form. You do need to get approval for a counseling but as long as you have plenty of documentation you should have no problem getting approval. I would be miserable if our store ran the way you described as being a TL would be pointless and we would have a hard time getting respect...
We cuss all the time and never get in trouble.

Of course we're in the backroom and also have the ability to control our mouths when in the sales floor or ETLs are around
State of Target no longer works for spot & these posts are three years old.
A lot has changed so much of this is a moot point.
What complete bullshit

I got wrote up for something stupid that was considered "disrespectful" "not brand" and "creating a hostile work environment". Know what I did? I told a TM "I guess I could" in response to trying to tell me a TL what to do. So yeah... Fuck HR and STLs if they with the bs
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