I run a small business. Twice in the past two years, I’ve had employees quit directly after taking maternity leave. Prior to their departures, it was understood that they would return to work. This has caused understandable upheaval in the office. What questions, if any, can I ask employees taking maternity or paternity leave? Can I require them to come back to work in order to take the leave? Are there any options for me to avoid this happening in the future?
I know sitting all day is bad for me, even if I’m getting exercise, so I’d like to try a standing desk. Some of my coworkers would, too. How do I approach my boss about potentially making a change to the way his employees do their work? I have the same question for getting new chairs. I know they’re expensive, but many of us are uncomfortable. How can I convince him that it’s a good idea to spend the money?
Tis the season for sharing! In the spirit of the holiday season, tell us your office holiday party horror story (anonymously, of course). Next month we’ll share the most cringe-worthy as well as advice on damage control — in case anything goes awry this year.
Don’t be a Scrooge … You know you’ve got one.
You’ve finally done it. Your business now has that elusive support team that should enable you to take the odd weekend off, serve more clients and stop being the bottleneck for every decision. Time to celebrate! … Except, you remember, you still need to train those new team members.
I manage a group of about 13 people, and we communicate via instant messages. I have one employee who persistently bad-mouthed me in online conversations. I confirmed that he was aware that I could see his messages, and I told him I saw messages that concerned me. Since then, he’s disengaged from his job and is only doing the bare minimum. I feel I should address this with him, but I’m unsure of how to do so.
I own a design firm, and we regularly employ freelance designers and photographers. Some work for us sporadically and others work for us on a regular basis. What are my responsibilities regarding liability and workers’ compensation?
In a world with automated bill paying, direct deposits and DVR, you may be thinking “what will they automate next?” If you’re a business owner looking for seasonal help or another employee, then I have good news for you. Automating your hiring process can not only save time and headaches, but it can also help identify the best applicants easier than ever.
What items gathered during the recruitment process can I share with others? We require approval from several parties before making an employment offer, and I am concerned that we may be sharing confidential information when “check complete” should be enough.
About 70 percent of my team are introverts, and all of them were here when I came on board as a manager. They won’t come together to solve problems. In fact, one of my employees told me, “I like to figure things out on my own.” It’s like each one of them lives on an island, and it’s too hard to take their boat over to collaborate. Any advice?
The old-school office style emphasized privacy and individual productivity. But the new model prioritizes the ideals of the creative class — that fast-growing, highly educated, well-paid segment of the workforce that values creativity, collaboration and the ability to customize.
VSP wanted The Shop in Midtown to be flexible, buildable and breakable, a learning space and a prototype in itself (form following function). With that in mind, architects put wheels on the tables and on corrugated cardboard walls to make everything portable and adaptable.
I work at a small, privately owned company of 15 people. I am third in the chain of command. My direct boss has just put in his notice, and now I am in the odd position of having to hire myself a new boss. How do I make sure that the boss is the right fit?
I’m an accountant for a small start up in Sacramento — not an HR manager. But, as often happens, HR issues tend to fall on someone, and that someone is me. The current team has been here since the beginning; we started the place. But now we need to hire someone. A stranger. How do I start?
On opening day of the 2014 baseball season, New York Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy was noticeably absent. He wasn’t benched. He didn’t have the flu. He simply took advantage of Major League Baseball’s paternity leave policy, which grants 72 hours off, to attend the birth of his son.
And all hell broke loose.
Left unchecked, underachievers can drag down an entire team’s performance, and that goes double when the problem staffer is family.
Have you ever arrived at work and realized you don’t remember driving there? It’s kind of a weird feeling, but your consciousness was somewhere else while your subconscious did all the work of traveling, turning, merging and parking. You can do this because your commute is so ingrained that it doesn’t involve any real decision-making.
You can dismiss someone from the conference room, but you may still have to face him or her in the living room.
If the words “corporate retreat” conjure up visions of falling backward into a trust catch, fervently hoping that Bob and Sally from accounting step up to prevent your impending head trauma, you’re a little behind the times.
Terminating an employee is never easy, and there are no guarantees that you won’t be slapped, but there are a few things you can do to make it easier on everyone.