Tips for Writing a Warning Letter for Bad Behavior

warning letter

Depending on the company’s disciplinary policies, it could be better to first give a written warning and instruct by Human Resources representative or manager that how to correct their behavior. If they fail to meet the company’s expectations, you will issue a written warning notice emphasizing the importance of their actions and outlining what will happen if they continue to do so.

Writing a warning letter to an employee can be a tricky proposition. It is not a piece of writing that is used very often, so if you were to use this as your main form of communication, then it would most likely come across as being aggressive or threatening. So, here are tips for writing a warning letters for bad behavior.

  • The first step to take when writing a warning letter is to simply tell the employee in a very straightforward and firm manner what you are accusing them of doing.
  • Do not try to be creative or come up with your own version of events. Be specific as possible, even though this might backfire on you if the employee makes any incorrect moves. You must remain focused on the behavior in question.
  • Next, you must take the specific examples set out in the warning letter and talk about them. Do not use hearsay or general statements in your explanation of what the employee did wrong. If the employee corrects the situation after receiving the warning letter, you should commend him or her for the act and then ask what he or she plans to do to correct the behavior.
  • You should then indicate the steps you will take to make sure the bad behavior does not occur again. You will want to make sure you are not coming off as being abusive in your approach, but you must be clear that you are not happy with the way things are being conducted at work, and you believe there is a problem that needs to be addressed.
  • Another important step in writing warning letters for bad behaviors is to be as direct as possible. You may be able to avoid a formal warning letter altogether by simply informing the employee in question that their actions have caused you to issue the warning letter.
  • If you were unsure of this ahead of time, you could probably get away with a simple warning letter or express some sort of concern for the employee’s poor performance. It is important to be direct when telling an employee they are putting themselves in a position of trouble if they continue to behave badly.
  • If you are going to give it orally? One good thing about writing a warning letter by email is that you can include verifiable facts as to why you believe the bad behavior is occurring.
  • If you are unsure as to what actions you are thinking of taking, it helps to consult with a more experienced person. That way, when you finally sit down to deliver your warning letter to your boss, you will have a much better idea of what to say.



To write a formal warning letter for bad behavior you have to keep in mind some important steps. Above given points, you must put the steps you believe will get your point across clearly to your boss in a manner that is not threatening but still follows the law. Once you have done this, you can be sure that any warning letter you send him or her will be effective.


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