Today’s topic is a serious one: we are going to talk about sexual harassment in the workplace…how to recognize it, establishing procedures to report it, and how to prevent it. The goal is a zero tolerance, harassment-free workplace.
Before we discuss ways to improve your corporate culture, let’s summarize 5 components to consider in your compensation and benefits package:
We all know you need skilled and dedicated employees to build and grow your business. Attracting the right people is essential to positioning your company for growth and success, but establishing your company as a destination for top talent takes effort.
You've got to lead the competition on two fronts by: (1) offering an attractive compensation and benefits package, and (2) showcasing a corporate brand and culture that both excites and motivates candidates.
Today, we’re going to talk about something every supervisor and employee should do: set goals. Whether timed to the start of the calendar year, or done in conjunction with quarterly or annual reviews, goal setting has far-reaching benefits.
Employees who set goals increase both their commitment and motivation, and they become more invested in their jobs and long-term career plans. Employers also benefit—the goal-setting process allows them to direct employees’ efforts toward maximizing accomplishments and… perhaps most importantly… toward supporting the company’s own long-term goals.
Sounds like a win-win… but how do you, as a manager, go about setting goals?
To start, know that goal setting will be most successful when you provide each employee with clear expectations regarding performance that are tied to an understanding of how his or her individual work contributes to the company’s overall goals.
To help make that happen, there are 7 key criteria that your goals should meet.
1. Be specific. Clearly communicate the tasks or behaviors employees must accomplish or demonstrate to achieve successful results. Performance goals should function to align employee growth and development with that of your business.
2. Be realistic. You need to set goals that are challenging, but attainable based on your employee’s knowledge, skills and resources. Ask the employee for input, and make sure you monitor and update goals as circumstances change. Your definition of “realistic” may change as the year proceeds.
Today, we’ll be discussing employee motivation. Whether you’re the CEO of a Fortune 500 company or the owner of a five-person firm, you know that a motivated team is essential to your success. More than that, a demotivated staff can do serious damage to your business.
So, what are the warning signs of demotivated employees? According to a blog on the professional networking site, LinkedIn, there are three key areas to watch out for: workplace atmosphere, job standards, and employee productivity. If any or all of these are trending downwards, there’s a good chance you’re dealing with demotivated employees.
As a business owner or manager, you need to not only motivate employees, but also help them to motivate themselves. Ultimately, your goal is to create an environment that allows your employees to meet or exceed expectations, do their best, and feel valued.
Understanding what motivates employees comes down to knowing your staff as individuals. Remember, we all have different needs, aspirations, and values…therefore, what motivates one employee may not work for another. That’s why your best strategy is to offer a range of motivators to improve performance, enthusiasm, and retention.
You may not give much thought to doing your taxes outside of tax season, but some of the expenses you pay during the year might qualify for money-saving tax credits or deductions come tax time. If you organize your tax records now, you'll make tax filing easier and faster when you do them next year. It also helps reduce the chance that you'll lose a receipt or statement that you need.
A workplace emergency is an unforeseen situation that threatens your employees, customers, or the public; disrupts or shuts down your operations; or causes physical or environmental damage. Having an emergency action plan is key to preventing a disorganized evacuation or emergency response that could result in confusion, injury, and property damage.
Maintaining the confidentiality of valuable company information--such things as customer lists, trade secrets, and other proprietary data--can be a challenge, both during the course of an individual's employment and after an employee leaves the company.
To help ensure that confidential information remains just that, and to discourage former employees from using knowledge gained at your firm to the advantage of another employer, you may consider requiring that certain employees sign agreements.
These fall into 3 specific areas:
1. Non-competition agreements, which prohibit them from working for a competitor or engaging in activities that compete with your business
2. Non-solicitation agreements, which prohibit luring your customers or other employees to a competing business; and
3. Confidentiality agreements, which prohibit disclosing confidential information to anyone outside the company or anyone within the company who is not authorized to receive the information.
An employee leaving your company often has a lot of knowledge about your business and workplace. A final sit-down with a departing employee may prove valuable to your company going forward and may provide an outlet for letting the individual "let off steam" and possibly reduce the likelihood of a lawsuit.
The witness may take notes if helpful. The presence of a witness, preferably one of the same gender as the terminated employee, will help to negate any claims of harassment or inappropriate action during the termination meeting, and provide an eyewitness to the process.
Also, consider security. Sadly, the recent history of violence in the workplace means that employers must be prepared for the possibility of an outburst by the employee either during the termination meeting or soon afterward. If the employer has any reason to expect the possibility of violence, it is wise to take extra security measures. This would include escorting the employee from the building and perhaps having security guards on standby.