HR Fender Benders
Was I just asked that? (Click to open/close)
As an employer you want to make the best hiring decisions that you can. You might not even be aware that some of the questions you have been asking during interviews are illegal. Here are our top 5 questions to stay away from:
This is by no means an exhaustive list. For you visual learners, read more.
Would you wear this to work? (Click to open/close)
Unless you'll be walking through low water and need to keep your feet warm, this look may not fit into your office dress code. Summer heat often times brings confusion in work-appropriate outfits, so having a specific dress code policy in place can help make sure you and your employees are on the same page.
Dress Code: Business Attire Policy
Employees contribute to the corporate culture and reputation of [company] in the way they present themselves. A professional appearance is essential to a favorable impression with customers, regulators, and company shareholders (owners). Good grooming and appropriate dress reflect employee pride and inspire confidence on the part of such persons.
Managers may exercise good discretion to determine appropriateness in appearance. Employees who do not meet a professional standard may be sent home to change and non-exempt employees will not be paid for that time off. Some basic essentials of appropriate dress include the wearing of socks or stockings and the need for clothing to be neat and clean. A reasonable standard of dress rules out tight or short pants, tank tops, halter-tops or any extreme in dress, accessory, fragrances or hair. It is impossible and undesirable to define an absolute code for dress and fragrances. Company will apply a rule of reason on a case-by-case basis.
Management may make exceptions for special occasions. An employee unsure of what is appropriate should check with the manager or supervisor.
Business casual dress will be permitted on Fridays except during the specified periods when casual days will be suspended. Business casual is defined as follows:
Some departments may require specific guidelines. People who need to leave work to change clothes for meetings will take personal time or vacation time to do so. If you are meeting clients, business dress is appropriate. These policies may be changed as the fashions change.
Reviewed/Revised March 2010
Hope this Guy in NOT on your Payroll (Click to open/close)
As funny as this clip (and the entire Office Space movie) is to those of us in the working world, no manager wants an employee like Peter. Presenteeism, while not recognized by Microsoft Word as an actual word, is a very common term that refers to people who are at work but not working to their potential.
Common when people are sick, it is also more common when employees take too many breaks, spend long periods of time gossiping, surfing the web, or worse for you – are online all day looking for a new job.
While a little of this presenteeism is ok, and probably necessary, some estimates point to “chronic” presenteeism causing American Businesses more than $150 billion per year. 
So what do you do about it? Banning certain internet sites or telling people to get off a personal call might be an immediate cure, but solves nothing in the long run. Getting to know your employees is, as always, the key to solving most of your problems. Get to the root of your employees, and you will get to the root cause of their presenteeism. If that doesn’t work, you can always use the Office Space Jump to Conclusions Mat to guide you in the right direction. http://bit.ly/xwSPH3
Source:  McCormack, Colm. "The Problem of Presenteeism - An Expanded Definition of the Topic." (2009): Web. <www.colmmccormack.com>.
DON'T DO THIS: Holiday Edition (Click to open/close)
Consider the affects of drinking too much on your relationships with your coworkers, your professional reputation, your manager’s ongoing regard, the office gossip mill, and your own view of yourself. Set your limit; stick with the limit you set. Don’t risk your professional reputation for a third or fourth drink at a company event.
Sexual Harassment (Click to open/close)
Sexual Harassment is funny in a cartoon but not funny when it happens in your business. With over 25% of all discrimination and harassment suits costing businesses in excess of $1,000,000 each, conducting a carefully developed sexual harassment seminar for supervisors and employees will be time and money wellspent*.
You care about the environment you provide your employees. For $250 you can make sure it continues to be a place of respect. You can also protect against a frivolous lawsuit if it does happen. The US Supreme Court has stated that for a company to reduce liability for harassment claims it must train employees and supervisors, require employees to report incidents of harassment, thoroughly investigate all reports and take corrective action when necessary.
*Source: Nation's Business, December 1, 1998, p.18
"Life in a Box™ cartoon is copyright 2007 - 2009 CubicleCartoon.com and has been used with permission of the author, Abigail Spankie.
Have you ever done this? (Click to open/close)
"A Vice President accidentally sent details of all his employees' salaries on a company group e-mail. Realizing his error, he set the fire alarm off to clear the office before deleting the e-mail from every inbox."
Results of E-mail Oops
Is this how your employees handle conflict? (Click to open/close)
Not all do, but you have probably had employees who handle disagreements like those kids did. Steer clear of these roadblocks by aligning employee behavior and your expectations through a well documented handbook. Beyond the handbook, knowing how to handle conflict in your company and how to equip your employees is worth pursuing. If you're not sure how to get started, ask us for directions.
Man gets friend to shoot him to avoid workplace drug test (Click to open/close)
I can’t come in to work today to take my drug test because I’ve been shot.
The employee in this case wasn’t lying. He really was shot. In fact, he asked a friend to shoot him so he didn’t have to report to work.
Daniel Kuch of Pasco, Washington, told police he’d been the victim of a drive-by shooting while jogging, according to wire service reports.
Later, Kuch fessed up to purposely getting shot in the shoulder to miss work.
Kuch is expected to be charged with false reporting; his friend faces reckless endangerment charges.
Police won’t say where Pasco worked. May not matter because he probably doesn’t have a job anymore.
Source: April 1, 2008 by Fred Hosier
"Stupid is as stupid does." - Forrest Gump
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