Employers are struggling to manage the impact that COVID-19 has had on their organizations and lives. Click below to download our eBook that contains tips and answers to common questions from employers like you.
As you may be aware, President Trump signed a bill into law on Wednesday called H.R.6201 - Families First Coronavirus Response Act. The purpose of the Act is to make emergency supplemental appropriations to support the COVID-19 pandemic. The Act is quite lengthy and as it stands would provide:
The amendment inserts SEC 110. Public Health Emergency Leave which applies to employers of 50 or more employees and addresses eligible employees who have been employed for at least 30 calendar days. It requires employers to comply with a recommendation or order by a public official having jurisdiction or a health care provider that the employee’s presence on the job would jeopardize the health of others because of
In general, the first 14 days of leave may consist of unpaid leave, however, the employee may at their own preference substitute accrued time off during this period. The employer cannot mandate that accrued time off be used.
Paid leave may not be less than 2/3 of the employee’s regular rate and based on the number of hours the employee would normally work.
Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act
Employers are to provide paid sick time for any of the following:
The number of hours paid is 80 hours for full time employees; and the average hours worked for part time employees, over a two-week period.
Employers must post a notice in a conspicuous place on their premises. The notice will be made publicly available by the Secretary of Labor within 7 days of the enactment of the Act. We have a notice service we are happy to discuss to ensure compliance with not only coronavirus, but with other mandated notices that must be provided to your employees.
There is a lot to absorb. The information we have provided is our interpretation and is not intended as legal advice. Additionally, because this is mandated (as opposed to voluntary), we encourage you to become familiar with the Act and utilize legal counsel as appropriate. A summary of the H.R 6201 - Families First Coronavirus Response Act, is here.
The Act includes a coronavirus relief package, therefore, we recommend creation of pay codes and pay policies in both the payroll and timekeeping system so hours paid and limits may be tracked. As your partner, we are here to support you in the effort.
While employers are used to dealing with flu season every year, the new coronavirus threat has caused many employers to rethink how they deal with illnesses and whether they have appropriate plans in place for emerging health threats.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause various illnesses and include for example:
· The common cold;
· Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS); and
· Middle East Respiratory syndrome (MERS).
However, the 2019 novel coronavirus (or COVID-19) has caused such a stir since it is a new strain that had not been previously identified in humans. Now that there are confirmed cases of the virus in the US, employers should be thinking about the coronavirus and its potential impact on the workplace and consider the following tips to protect their employees and workplaces.
1. Follow CDC and OSHA Coronavirus Guidelines
Employers should familiarize themselves with guidance from government agencies, including:
· The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA); and
· The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
According to OSHA, “Most American workers are not at significant risk of infection,” but there are workers that may have an elevated exposure risk because of their interaction with potentially affected travelers from abroad. Types of workers with an elevated risk may include those working in:
· Health care;
· Air travel;
· Border protection;
· Laboratories; and
· Waste management.
Additionally, workers who travel to certain areas where the virus is spreading have an elevated risk.
The CDC has released interim guidance to help prevent workplace exposures to acute respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19, in non-healthcare settings. However, the CDC cautions that to prevent stigma and workplace discrimination, employers should only use their guidance to determine the risk of COVID-19 infection.
CDC guidance emphasizes that an employer should not make a determination of risk based on an employee’s race or country of origin and needs to maintain confidentiality of people that have been confirmed to have the infection.
The CDC currently recommends that employers:
· Actively encourage sick employees to stay home;
· Separate sick employees from the rest of the workforce and send them home immediately;
· Emphasize respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene by all employees;
· Perform routine environmental cleaning; and
· Advise traveling employees to take precautions.
The CDC guidance also provides employers with:
· Planning considerations for more widespread community outbreaks;
· Important things to consider when creating an infectious disease outbreak response plan; and
· Recommendations for such plans.
2. Be Aware of Legal Responsibilities Related to Coronavirus
Although there are currently no laws or regulations that specifically address an employer’s legal obligations related to the coronavirus, it’s important to be aware of the General Duty Clause of the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act. While this clause applies to many different situations, in the case of the coronavirus, it essentially requires employers to ensure that their employees have safe and healthy workplaces.
However, the General Duty Clause is not the only safety and health consideration employers need to take into account. They also must remember that OSHA’s Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) standard requires them to provide employees with certain equipment (e.g., gloves, eye and face protection, and respiratory devices) when particular hazards may cause injury or impairment.
Also, since OSHA has deemed the coronavirus to be a recordable illness when a worker is infected on the job, an employer must record any such cases on the OSHA 300 log.
3. Educate Employees on Coronavirus
It’s important to educate employees about the transmission and symptoms of the coronavirus to help calm fears and reduce the spread of misinformation. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the coronavirus can be transmitted person-to-person, specifically through respiratory secretions such as coughing and sneezing.
Common signs of the virus are:
· Respiratory symptoms;
· Shortness of breath; and
· Breathing difficulties.
Severe cases may cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure or death.
4. Reduce Potential Exposure to Infectious Diseases
There are always certain precautionary measures employers can take to reduce the risk of their employees being exposed to most infectious diseases, including the coronavirus. It’s always a good idea to strongly urge employees to:
· Regularly wash their hands;
· Cover their mouths and noses when sneezing or coughing; and
· Avoid close contact with individuals showing symptoms of respiratory illnesses.
Employers can also take extra precautions. For example, an employer may want to consider providing hand sanitizer in high-traffic areas or around items that are handled by numerous people (e.g., shared computers, copiers, bathrooms).
5. Address Employee Concerns Around Coronavirus
With constant news coverage of the coronavirus, it’s only natural that employees may be nervous and concerned about contracting the virus. If employees approach you with concerns, be understanding and evaluate every request or issue based on an employee’s particular circumstances.
If an employee refuses to come to work when a co-worker is suspected of having contracted the coronavirus, or is displaying flu-like symptoms, consider alternative arrangements such as flexible working. Since there is still a lot that is unknown about the virus, listen to the employee’s concerns and be open to discussing alternative solutions.
6. Evaluate Business Travel to Coronavirus-Affected Regions
If you have employees that are supposed to travel to a coronavirus-affected region, consider proposing an alternative solution. For example, employees could conduct their business over Skype from their home offices, or they could travel to a different region to reach the same desired result.
Make sure to check the advisories on travel restrictions issued by the CDC and other government agencies to help you decide the best way to evaluate and implement revised business travel strategies.
7. Develop Workplace Strategies to Address Contagious Diseases
The coronavirus outbreak serves as a reminder for employers to have workplace strategies in place to deal with infectious diseases. An employer should:
· Determine how to address an infectious disease in the workplace;
· Consider implementing a contagious disease policy;
· Consider creating an infectious disease outbreak response plan; and
· Evaluate additional workplace issues relating to infectious diseases.
With the arrival of summer come thoughts of time off and travel, lazy days at the beach and ice cream cones on a hot day - July, in fact, is National Ice Cream Month! For HR professionals the season also calls to mind summer workplace issues such as summer dress codes, flexible schedules, seasonal hires and - you guessed it - new midyear employment law requirements. Here's the scoop on the latest employment law changes taking effect on or around July 1.
The states and localities once again took the lead, implementing more than 60 new compliance requirements across more than two dozen states, covering topics such as gender-neutral restrooms, e-cigarettes, discrimination and harassment, minimum wage, leaves of absence and recruiting and hiring. Delaware, the District of Columbia, Kentucky, Minnesota and Westchester County, New York, have new posting or notice requirements as well.
Below are key employment and labor law requirements that become effective midyear.
Many of the new requirements that take effect at midyear are minimum wage increases. Beginning July 1 the minimum wage rate will increase in over 18 localities across the US, including the District of Columbia. In several of these localities, the increases are based on employer size. In California alone, over 10 localities will see the minimum wage increase this summer. At the state level, New Jersey and Oregon will see increases to the minimum wage, while Virginia is repealing several exemptions from its minimum wage law for certain types of workers.
The Minimum Wage Rates by State and Municipality 50-State Chart provides further details on current and future minimum wage rates for states and localities.
Leaves of Absence
Employers in New Jersey, New York and the District of Columbia have new obligations related to paid leave. In the District of Columbia, employers are required to begin contributing to paid family leave benefits, while in New Jersey the state's family leave act now applies to smaller employers. New Jersey is also eliminating the one-week waiting period for employees to collect paid family leave benefits under the state's family leave insurance law. And although Massachusetts delayed the start of its paid family and medical leave program, the law's retaliation provisions take effect July 1.
Employers in Westchester County, New York, should be aware of new notice requirements for paid sick leave.
The Paid Family Leave Requirements by State and Municipality and Paid Sick Leave by State and Municipality 50-State Charts provide an overview of these requirements at the state and local levels.
Discrimination and Harassment
Discrimination and harassment remain key issues that employers should continue to keep top of mind. For example, New Mexico has a new law regulating gender-neutral single-user restrooms. The District of Columbia has a number of sexual harassment prevention requirements coming into effect for covered employers of tipped employees, while Delaware employers have to comply with new notice requirements explaining sexual harassment protections.
Other Trending Topics
In addition to minimum wage, leaves of absence and discrimination and harassment, employers should be on the lookout for midyear changes at the state and local level on topics such as pregnancy and lactation accommodations, data security breaches, nondisclosure agreements, criminal and salary history inquiries and the use of background checks in hiring.
Federal, State and Local Developments
Taxpayer First Act's Whistleblower and Retaliation Provisions Take Effect
Arizona Allows Majority Shareholders to Opt in to Workers' Compensation Coverage
Smoking in the Workplace
Colorado Expands Smoking Prohibitions
Delaware Employers Must Provide Employees Sexual Harassment Prevention Information Sheet
District of Columbia
District of Columbia Sexual Harassment Prevention Provisions Take Effect
District of Columbia Requires Employer Contributions for Universal Paid Leave Benefits
Health Care Benefits
Florida Preserves Certain ACA Benefits
Smoking in the Workplace
Florida Prohibits Vaping in Workplaces
Georgia Expands and Increases Workers' Compensation Benefits
Hawaii Enacts New Child Support Noncompliance Penalty
Hawaii Prohibits Discrimination Based on Reproductive Health Decisions
Idaho Amends Service Animals Law
Illinois Legalizes Recreational Marijuana
Illinois Requires Medium-Size Employers to Enroll in Secure Choice Savings Program
Minimum Wage; Overtime; Unemployment Insurance
Indiana Exempts Direct Sellers From Minimum Wage, Overtime and Unemployment Insurance Laws
Indiana Adds OSH Act Civil Penalty
Iowa Franchisor Protection Law Takes Effect
Iowa Places Limits on Negligent Hiring Protections
Iowa Workers' Compensation Law No Longer Covers Injuries Resulting From Certain Falls
Pregnancy and Lactation Accommodations
Kentucky Requires Pregnancy and Lactation Accommodations, Notice Posting
Terms of Employment; Background Checks; Arbitration
Kentucky Amends Law Affecting Arbitration Agreements, Employment Contracts and Background Checks
Family and Medical Leave
Massachusetts Issues Paid Family and Medical Leave Final Regulations
Family and Medical Leave
Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave Retaliation Provisions Take Effect
Minnesota Enacts Wage Theft Provisions
Paid Sick Leave
Minneapolis, Minnesota, Paid Sick Leave Law Applies to Nonresident Employers
Nevada Permits Sealing of Records for Decriminalized Offenses
Nevada Establishes Independent Contractor Classification Criteria for Construction Workers
Nevada Expands Qualifying Medical Conditions Under Medical Marijuana Law
Terms of Employment
Nevada Limits Use of Confidentiality Provisions in Settlement Agreements
Paid Family Leave
New Jersey Family and Medical Leave
New Jersey Family Leave Act Applies to Smaller Employers
Eliminates Waiting Period for Paid Family Leave Benefits
New Jersey Amends Medical Marijuana Law
New Mexico Enacts Law Regulating Gender-Neutral Single-User Restrooms
Suffolk County, New York Bans Salary History Inquiries
Paid Sick Leave
Westchester County, New York, Requires Paid Sick Leave Notice
Overtime; Workers' Compensation; Unemployment Insurance
Ohio Exempts Motor Carrier Workers From Overtime, Workers' Compensation and Unemployment Insurance
Oklahoma Amends Unemployment Tax Law
Pennsylvania Limits Access to Certain Criminal Records and Gives Employers Immunity
Rhode Island Amends Service Animals Law
Smoking in the Workplace
South Dakota Prohibits E-Cigarette Use in the Workplace
Vermont Limits Employer Inquiries Regarding Sealed and Expunged Criminal Records
Data Security Breach
Virginia Expands Definition of Personal Information Under Data Breach Notification Law
Virginia Amendments Relating to Employment Records Take Effect
Virginia Limits Use of Nondisclosure Agreements Regarding Sexual Assault
West Virginia Issues Medical Marijuana Patient Identification Cards
Wyoming Increases Penalties for Equal Pay Violations
Garnishment of Wages
Wyoming Exempts Certain Disposable Earnings From Creditor Garnishment
December 19, 2017 | Sabrina Clay, CCWP
We can all agree that employee attrition is a natural course of business, people come and go for various reasons. Everyone is familiar with layoffs and it’s expected that nobody will be replaced, at least for a while. But when someone leaves an organization through “traditional” methods such as resignation or termination, it is widely anticipated the exiting employee will be replaced. The question here is what happens when the replacement does not occur? Nobody talks about it, yet so many experience this issue.
In these situations, employees are now tasked with doing more with less. They usually end up working longer hours to overcome the additional burden which in some cases results in overtime pay. Additional stress can impede productivity thereby impacting what actually gets accomplished. The cost savings anticipated by leadership doesn’t necessarily occur. What will, and does, occur is a significant impact on the company culture. Culture is the personality of the company, it defines the environment, ethics, value, and expectations, and sets the standard in which people work. It is a very powerful component within an organization. Culture becomes negatively impacted when:
With loyalty fading, “A-Players” will eventually start looking for a better place to work. The additional blow to productivity caused by this can create a tailspin that is difficult to recover from. But it does not have to be this way. Anne M. Mulcahy, the former CEO of Xerox, said it best:
“Employees are a company's greatest asset - they're your competitive advantage. You want to attract and retain the best; provide them with encouragement, stimulus, and make them feel that they are an integral part of the company's mission”.
The long-term success of any company depends heavily upon the quality of its workers and worker loyalty. Employees create, develop and support a company’s services and products, and frequently serve as the voice of a company. It’s my opinion a company owes it to their hard-working workforce to ensure solid communication during times of change. It’s amazing how resilient a workforce can be if they are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.
Companies can demonstrate their loyalty to employees by offering specific acknowledgment to employee contributions and showing appreciation for hard work. By planning for attrition and allowing employees to be a part of the plan, companies are underscoring a positive culture, creating loyalty and uplifting their brand.
September 21, 2017 | Sabrina Clay, CCWP
We all have enough to do in our day, and some days maybe more than we would like. So, the thought of adding to that already-full plate seems inconceivable. Yet I am asking you to take a quick step back. Picture your home and the care and feeding that goes into its maintenance. Dusting, vacuuming, windows, mowing grass…..you get the picture. Now think about just doing any or all of those tasks just one time. Your house becomes disheveled, your yard an overgrown mess. This is similar to what you are doing with your human resources practices if you don’t keep your “house” in order.
The human resources “house” is a critical component to the strategic operation of a business. But how do your human resources practices and processes measure up to regulations from the Department of Labor (DOL), Department of Justice (DOJ), Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB)? Quite a daunting list!
An HR assessment, also referred to as an audit, is a truly objective look at your company's HR policies, practices, procedures, and strategies. The purpose is to protect your company, establish best practices and identify opportunities for improvement. But there never seems to be an ideal time. So take a tip from your own playbook….planning. A terrific way to ensure a regular review is to build it into your process. To ease the burden, you can break your audit into segments:
As you are going through your audit, try to stay focused on the task. It’s so easy to get caught in the moment, trying to “fix” things as they are uncovered. A more practical method is to complete discovery, document your findings, then devise a plan to address areas needing improvement. This is also a great time to uncover what is working (aka Best Practice) and not working. Once this is complete, then you can execute on your plan.
By documenting your audit, you have a comprehensive record of what was completed in prior years for look-back purposes, and to see how far you have come! Are you making the same mistakes year over year? Are there one or two areas where you seem to struggle with consistently? This “record” can serve you well.
Laws change, company visions can morph, and so should your practices. An audit will provide the checks and balances to keep your company squeaky clean. If available time is an issue, there are firms such as H2R-Solutions that can help keep your HR “house” in premium working order.
September 6, 2017 | Sabrina Clay, CCWP
What is DACA? Also known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, DACA was enacted in 2012 and is a deportation relief program focused on protecting immigrant youth who came to the United States when they were children. For those that applied, this program also provides work permits, enabling them to support themselves while they await legalization and is renewable in two-year increments.
Among the questions as to what will happen to the nearly 800,000 people affected (if DACA is phased out) is the fate of those work permits. According to a recent Center for American Progress study in August, a reported 91 percent of respondents are currently employed with 5 percent having opened their own business. The study also revealed an average of 30,000 people will be out of work each month if DACA is repealed.
Many companies may be unaware they employ DACA recipients because the paperwork looks very similar to what is issued for many other visa categories. Understandably, employers are concerned about workforce impact and determining how to react. Rather than taking action that is leading toward identification of those who may be DACA recipients, multiple legal pundits suggest making sure your “house” is in order to mitigate risk. Here are some do’s and don’ts to help:
Again, we do not know if work authorizations will be immediately terminated or if they will be phased out. What we do know is I-9 practices should be tightened to ensure that they are stored properly and kept up to date according to US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) guidelines.
As a friendly reminder, there is a new I-9 form in town, released on July 17th. While you may continue using form I-9 with a revision date of 11/14/16 through September 17th, on September 18th, employers must use the revised form. The new form will be available from the USCIS website at https://www.uscis.gov/i-9-central/whats-new. The changes are relatively minor, including additions to the list of acceptable documents and amendment to the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices newer name “Immigrant and Employee Rights Section.” Employers will continue utilizing existing storage and retention guidelines for previously completed I-9’s.
August 24, 2017 | Sabrina Clay, CCWP
Paid time off is difficult for both the employer and the employee. Studies show that people just aren't taking time off. And time off is good for the soul and your company.
According to a U.S. Travel Association report, 658 million vacation days went unused by American workers last year. With reasons varying from fear of returning to a mountain of work and feeling no one else can do their job, a shocking 22 percent said they wanted to show a complete dedication to their job. But at what cost?
You want to provide work-life balance for your employees (and quite frankly yourself), but what is the best approach? When determining the best time off policy, it's important to consider your culture. While difficult to recognize, ask yourself if your culture creates an unspoken stigma around taking time off. Do managers hesitate to promote time off because it will over burden them? Your managers may be subtly discouraging employees from taking time off and not realize it.
Perhaps you turn the tables to promote and anticipate vacations.
Another critical component to time off policies is your messaging. We know there must be rules, but how are they communicated? Do they come across as strict and cold? Vacation is fun, so make your rules around vacation fun as well. For example, We’re going to miss you while you're out, but we want to know when to start missing you! Please let us know (insert timeframe) prior to taking your getaway. While this may sound silly, it helps to ease any tension that may exist.
It may be helpful to get feedback from your employees. Surveys tend to be impersonal, but focus groups can provide some truthful information on how your employees view vacations and the company's PTO plan. Remember, the most generous vacation packages are meaningless if the culture does not support taking time off.
August 3, 2017 | Sabrina Clay, CCWP
I’ve recently noticed an influx of posts and articles dedicated to the “quitting economy” and the wane of employee loyalty. But with all the perks, free snacks, nap pods, and bring-your-dog-to-work day’s out there, how did this occur? Is employee satisfaction at an all-time low?
Employee satisfaction describes whether employees are happy, content and fulfilled by the work they are doing. It is also a factor in their fulfillment and achievement of personal goals.
The way I see it, employment is much like dating. In the beginning of the relationship you are on your best behavior. Over time, the shine can become lackluster. However, just as in any relationship it is important that people feel wanted, needed, and respected. Maya Angelou said it best: “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”.
Here are 3 easy techniques to gain and maintain loyalty in your company:
It starts with your recruiting processes.
Instead of simply filling positions, take a proactive approach, so you’re not just recruiting but retaining your employees. In addition to learning about their professional background, seek to understand their goals, and what they want out of the job and their employer.
Embrace your company culture.
Think about how you described your company to your candidate during the interview process. Do you live by those beliefs, or were they just words? The goal with culture is to create a workplace that provides a positive direction for the company and its employees. It’s hiring people who have the same values and behaviors. It can easily become your brand, so be true to your culture.
We all need to trust our employees, but what about their trust in us? While developing trust is challenging work, model the behavior you seek: be honest (even when it’s uncomfortable to do so), be consistent and become accountable. Remember, trust is a two-way street. Employees want to know that their employer has their back.
The biggest secret is to give loyalty first. If you want employees to go above and beyond for you, you must go above and beyond for them. The best leaders understand if they fight for their team, the team will fight for them in return. Lest we forget, the employee is the most important asset of your organization.
July 26, 2017 | Sabrina Clay, CCWP
An HRIS is designed to create efficiencies and ensure the easy management of a business’s employees and data. Where some companies miss the mark is not taking advantage of the available functionality. We have gathered the 4 most popular (and efficient) Best Practices that will help you further benefit from your HRIS.
Best Practice #1: Enable Self Service
Typically thought of as just a place where employees gain access to pay stubs, employee self-service is a huge benefit of having an HRIS. In addition to pay stubs, employees have access to their tax information and benefits but can also make changes to personal information and manage address changes.
And it has a much higher value for you as the employer. Technology allows for quick approvals to employee-prompted changes and saves time and money from distribution of pay stubs. Another handy time saving feature enables the employee to populate their information during enrollment.
You might even consider self-service as one of your first steps during implementation. Since the employee population is much larger than the limited team that would otherwise be managing HR data entry, it might make sense to have employees enter their own information, saving tremendous amounts of time and potential errors.
So, as you can see, not only will your employee benefit from self-service, you will as well.
Best Practice #2: Use the EEOC Section
You might be surprised to hear that many companies are not capturing employee information in this section. Keep in mind that reporting capabilities are vast, and will save time and errors when it comes time for government reporting.
Best Practice #3
Pay Attention to Benefits
Benefits administration is a common element of an HRIS, and has been noted as one of the top reasons some companies invest in an HRIS. When using this feature, though, it is critical to ensure all data is captured.
Not only does this provide easy access to hard-to-remember information, keep in mind that insurance companies rely on the employer to house beneficiary and dependent information. If this information is not detailed, there is a good chance the insurance company will not pay.
Best Practice #4: Training, Training, Training!
Do you feel your HRIS isn’t performing as promised? It may be the result of a lack of training, or that the training was focused on the system, but failed to consider process. Perhaps there are inadequate training manuals and documentation. Whatever the cause, the solution truly resides with recurring training. People come and go, and may not understand complicated training manuals. Creating a toolkit with updated manuals and job aids will go a long way. Much like football teams attend spring training, it’s important to ensure the people running the system and processes receive proper and ongoing training to succeed.
As you contemplate the value of your HRIS, dig back to the core of what you were trying to accomplish: improved business performance. To gain the maximum benefit, it only makes sense to examine the functionality available and ask yourself if it’s worth it not to seize the opportunity.
If your organization is thinking of changing from one payroll schedule to another, it is important to transition properly. Follow these six steps to change seamlessly to a new schedule.
1. Create a team that will guide the change. Having one team in charge will increase ease of implementation and will decrease potential for mistakes during the process.
2. Investigate the details. Charge one individual with the job of researching the legal ramifications surrounding the planned change in payroll frequency. Make sure your new schedule abides by state laws, and confer with your company’s lawyer to discuss contractual issues regarding the change.
3. Save the date. Set a date for the change and make a timeline. It is especially helpful to make the change occur as close to the end of a fiscal year or the end of a quarter as possible to decrease record-keeping problems.
4. Communicate with employees. Inform your people of the change sooner rather than later. Advance notice will allow workers to plan accordingly for the change. Communication is especially critical if you plan to decrease the frequency of pay as this will impact employees’ monthly budgets.
5. Educate your employees about the change. Hold a question-and-answer session with your employees about the transition. A session like this will allow employees to feel heard and informed, and also helps prevent any confusion.
6. Integrate planned changes into new contracts rather than rewriting all existing ones. Write the new pay schedule into contracts offered to new hires, gradually phasing out the old pay frequency and converting to your new schedule over time.
Pay frequency is an important strategic decision for management because of its effect on legal compliance and costs, as well as its impact on employees.
In simple words, emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and manage emotions so that you can maintain harmony, both within yourself and in your social life.
There are four skills integral to emotional intelligence:
If you haven’t learned how to manage stress, it’s important to do so first. When you can manage stress, you’ll feel more comfortable reconnecting to strong or unpleasant emotions and changing the way you experience and respond to your feelings.
Being emotionally aware is just the first step to emotional management. In order for you to engage your emotional intelligence, you must also be able use your emotions to make constructive decisions about your behavior. When you become overly stressed, you can lose control of your emotions and the ability to act thoughtfully and appropriately.
Dr. Travis Bradberry
Coauthor EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE 2.0 & President at TalentSmart
Toxic people defy logic. Some are blissfully unaware of the negative impact that they have on those around them, and others seem to derive satisfaction from creating chaos and pushing other people’s buttons. Either way, they create unnecessary complexity, strife, and worst of all stress.
Studies have long shown that stress can have a lasting, negative impact on the brain. Exposure to even a few days of stress compromises the effectiveness of neurons in the hippocampus—an important brain area responsible for reasoning and memory. Weeks of stress cause reversible damage to neuronal dendrites (the small “arms” that brain cells use to communicate with each other), and months of stress can permanently destroy neurons. Stress is a formidable threat to your success—when stress gets out of control, your brain and your performance suffer.
Most sources of stress at work are easy to identify. If your non-profit is working to land a grant that your organization needs to function, you’re bound to feel stress and likely know how to manage it. It's the unexpected sources of stress that take you by surprise and harm you the most.
Recent research from the Department of Biological and Clinical Psychology at Friedrich Schiller University in Germany found that exposure to stimuli that cause strong negative emotions—the same kind of exposure you get when dealing with toxic people—caused subjects’ brains to have a massive stress response. Whether it's negativity, cruelty, the victim syndrome, or just plain craziness, toxic people drive your brain into a stressed-out state that should be avoided at all costs.
The ability to manage your emotions and remain calm under pressure has a direct link to your performance. TalentSmart has conducted research with more than a million people, and we’ve found that 90% of top performers are skilled at managing their emotions in times of stress in order to remain calm and in control. One of their greatest gifts is the ability to neutralize toxic people. Top performers have well-honed coping strategies that they employ to keep toxic people at bay.
While I’ve run across numerous effective strategies that successful people employ when dealing with toxic people, what follows are twelve of the best. To deal with toxic people effectively, you need an approach that enables you, across the board, to control what you can and eliminate what you can’t. The important thing to remember is that you are in control of far more than you realize.
They Set Limits (Especially with Complainers)
Complainers and negative people are bad news because they wallow in their problems and fail to focus on solutions. They want people to join their pity party so that they can feel better about themselves. People often feel pressure to listen to complainers because they don’t want to be seen as callous or rude, but there’s a fine line between lending a sympathetic ear and getting sucked into their negative emotional spiral.
You can avoid this only by setting limits and distancing yourself when necessary. Think of it this way: if the complainer were smoking, would you sit there all afternoon inhaling the second-hand smoke? You’d distance yourself, and you should do the same with complainers. A great way to set limits is to ask complainers how they intend to fix the problem. They will either quiet down or redirect the conversation in a productive direction.
They Don’t Die in the Fight
Successful people know how important it is to live to fight another day, especially when your foe is a toxic individual. In conflict, unchecked emotion makes you dig your heels in and fight the kind of battle that can leave you severely damaged. When you read and respond to your emotions, you’re able to choose your battles wisely and only stand your ground when the time is right.
They Rise Above
Toxic people drive you crazy because their behavior is so irrational. Make no mistake about it; their behavior truly goes against reason. So why do you allow yourself to respond to them emotionally and get sucked into the mix?
The more irrational and off-base someone is, the easier it should be for you to remove yourself from their traps. Quit trying to beat them at their own game. Distance yourself from them emotionally and approach your interactions like they’re a science project (or you’re their shrink, if you prefer the analogy). You don’t need to respond to the emotional chaos—only the facts.
They Stay Aware of Their Emotions
Maintaining an emotional distance requires awareness. You can’t stop someone from pushing your buttons if you don’t recognize when it’s happening. Sometimes you’ll find yourself in situations where you’ll need to regroup and choose the best way forward. This is fine and you shouldn’t be afraid to buy yourself some time to do so.
Think of it this way—if a mentally unstable person approaches you on the street and tells you he’s John F. Kennedy, you’re unlikely to set him straight. When you find yourself with a coworker who is engaged in similarly derailed thinking, sometimes it’s best to just smile and nod. If you’re going to have to straighten them out, it’s better to give yourself some time to plan the best way to go about it.
They Establish Boundaries
This is the area where most people tend to sell themselves short. They feel like because they work or live with someone, they have no way to control the chaos. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Once you’ve found your way to Rise Above a person, you’ll begin to find their behavior more predictable and easier to understand. This will equip you to think rationally about when and where you have to put up with them and when you don’t. For example, even if you work with someone closely on a project team, that doesn’t mean that you need to have the same level of one-on-one interaction with them that you have with other team members.
You can establish a boundary, but you’ll have to do so consciously and proactively. If you let things happen naturally, you are bound to find yourself constantly embroiled in difficult conversations. If you set boundaries and decide when and where you’ll engage a difficult person, you can control much of the chaos. The only trick is to stick to your guns and keep boundaries in place when the person tries to encroach upon them, which they will.
They Won’t Let Anyone Limit Their Joy
When your sense of pleasure and satisfaction are derived from the opinions of other people, you are no longer the master of your own happiness. When emotionally intelligent people feel good about something that they’ve done, they won’t let anyone’s opinions or snide remarks take that away from them.
While it’s impossible to turn off your reactions to what others think of you, you don’t have to compare yourself to others, and you can always take people’s opinions with a grain of salt. That way, no matter what toxic people are thinking or doing, your self-worth comes from within. Regardless of what people think of you at any particular moment, one thing is certain—you’re never as good or bad as they say you are.
They Don't Focus on Problems—Only Solutions
Where you focus your attention determines your emotional state. When you fixate on the problems you’re facing, you create and prolong negative emotions and stress. When you focus on actions to better yourself and your circumstances, you create a sense of personal efficacy that produces positive emotions and reduces stress.
When it comes to toxic people, fixating on how crazy and difficult they are gives them power over you. Quit thinking about how troubling your difficult person is, and focus instead on how you're going to go about handling them. This makes you more effective by putting you in control, and it will reduce the amount of stress you experience when interacting with them.
They Don’t Forget
Emotionally intelligent people are quick to forgive, but that doesn’t mean that they forget. Forgiveness requires letting go of what’s happened so that you can move on. It doesn’t mean you’ll give a wrongdoer another chance. Successful people are unwilling to be bogged down unnecessarily by others’ mistakes, so they let them go quickly and are assertive in protecting themselves from future harm.
They Squash Negative Self-Talk
Sometimes you absorb the negativity of other people. There’s nothing wrong with feeling bad about how someone is treating you, but your self-talk (the thoughts you have about your feelings) can either intensify the negativity or help you move past it. Negative self-talk is unrealistic, unnecessary, and self-defeating. It sends you into a downward emotional spiral that is difficult to pull out of. You should avoid negative self-talk at all costs.
They Limit Their Caffeine Intake
Drinking caffeine triggers the release of adrenaline. Adrenaline is the source of the “fight-or-flight” response, a survival mechanism that forces you to stand up and fight or run for the hills when faced with a threat. The fight-or-flight mechanism sidesteps rational thinking in favor of a faster response. This is great when a bear is chasing you, but not so great when you’re surprised in the hallway by an angry coworker.
They Get Some Sleep
I’ve beaten this one to death over the years and can’t say enough about the importance of sleep to increasing your emotional intelligence and managing your stress levels. When you sleep, your brain literally recharges, shuffling through the day’s memories and storing or discarding them (which causes dreams), so that you wake up alert and clear-headed. Your self-control, attention, and memory are all reduced when you don’t get enough—or the right kind—of sleep. Sleep deprivation raises stress hormone levels on its own, even without a stressor present.
A good night’s sleep makes you more positive, creative, and proactive in your approach to toxic people, giving you the perspective you need to deal effectively with them.
They Use Their Support System
It’s tempting, yet entirely ineffective, to attempt tackling everything by yourself. To deal with toxic people, you need to recognize the weaknesses in your approach to them. This means tapping into your support system to gain perspective on a challenging person. Everyone has someone at work and/or outside work who is on their team, rooting for them, and ready to help them get the best from a difficult situation. Identify these individuals in your life and make an effort to seek their insight and assistance when you need it. Something as simple as explaining the situation can lead to a new perspective. Most of the time, other people can see a solution that you can’t because they are not as emotionally invested in the situation.
Bringing It All Together
Before you get this system to work brilliantly, you’re going to have to pass some tests. Most of the time, you will find yourself tested by touchy interactions with problem people. Thankfully, the plasticity of the brain allows it to mold and change as you practice new behaviors, even when you fail. Implementing these healthy, stress-relieving techniques for dealing with difficult people will train your brain to handle stress more effectively and decrease the likelihood of ill effects.
”Somebody once told me the definition of hell:
“On your last day on earth, the person you became will meet the person you could have become.” — Anonymous
Sometimes, to become successful and get closer to the person we can become, we don’t need to add more things — we need to give up on some of them. There are certain things that are universal, which will make you successful if you give up on them, even though each one of us could have a different definition of success. You can give up on some of them today, while it might take a bit longer to give up on others.
1. Give Up On The Unhealthy Lifestyle
“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” — Jim Rohn“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” — Jim RohnIf you want to achieve anything in life, everything starts here. First you have to take care of your health, and there are only two things you need to keep in mind:
2. Give Up The Short-term Mindset
“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” -- Mae West
Successful people set long-term goals, and they know these aims are merely the result of short-term habits that they need to do every day.
These healthy habits shouldn’t be something you do; they should be something you embody. There is a difference between: “Working out to get a summer body” and “Working out because that’s who you are.”
3. Give Up On Playing Small
“Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone, and as we let our light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” - Marianne Williamson
If you never try and take great opportunities, or allow your dreams to become realities, you will never unleash your true potential. And the world will never benefit from what you could have achieved. So voice your ideas, don’t be afraid to fail, and certainly don’t be afraid to succeed.
4. Give Up Your Excuses
“It’s not about the cards you’re dealt, but how you play the hand.”
― Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture
Successful people know that they are responsible for their life, no matter their starting point, weaknesses, and past failures. Realising that you are responsible for what happens next in your life is both frightening and exciting. And when you do, that becomes the only way you can become successful, because excuses limit and prevent us from growing personally and professionally. Own your life; no one else will.
5. Give Up The Fixed Mindset
“The future belongs to those who learn more skills and combine them in creative ways.” ― Robert Greene, Mastery
People with a fixed mindset think their intelligence or talents are simply fixed traits, and that talent alone creates success — without effort. They’re wrong. Successful people know this. They invest an immense amount of time on a daily basis to develop a growth mindset, acquire new knowledge, learn new skills and change their perception so that it can benefit their lives. Remember, who you are today, it’s not who you have to be tomorrow.
6. Give Up Believing In The “Magic Bullet.”
“Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better” -- Émile Coué
Overnight success is a myth.
Successful people know that making small continual improvement every day will be compounded over time, and give them desirable results. That is why you should plan for the future, but focus on the day that’s ahead of you, and improve just 1% every day.
7. Give Up Your Perfectionism
“Shipping beats perfection.” -- Khan Academy’s Development Mantra
Nothing will ever be perfect, no matter how much we try. Fear of failure (or even fear of success) often prevents us from taking an action and putting our creation out there in the world. But a lot of opportunities will be lost if we wait for the things to be right. So “ship,” and then improve (that 1%).
8. Give Up Multi-tasking
“You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.” ― Winston S. Churchill
Successful people know this. That’s why they choose one thing and then beat it into submission. No matter what it is — a business idea, a conversation, or a workout. Being fully present and committed to a task, is indispensable.
9. Give Up Your Need to Control Everything
“Some things are up to us, and some things are not up to us.” -- Epictetus, Stoic philosopher
Differentiating these two is important. Detach from the things you cannot control, and focus on the ones you can, and know that sometimes, the only thing you will be able to control is your attitude towards something. Remember, nobody can be frustrated while saying “Bubbles” in an angry voice.
10. Give Up On Saying YES To Things That Don’t Support Your Goals
“He who would accomplish little must sacrifice little; he who would achieve much must sacrifice much; he who would attain highly must sacrifice greatly.” -- James Allen
Successful people know that in order to accomplish their goals, they will have to say NO to certain tasks, activities, and demands from their friends, family, and colleagues. In the short-term, you might sacrifice a bit of instant gratification, but when your goals come to fruition, it will all be worth it.
11. Give Up The Toxic People
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
― Jim Rohn
People we spend the most time with, add up to who we become. There are people who are less accomplished in their personal and professional life, and there are people who are more accomplished than us. If you spend time with those who are behind you, your average will go down, and with it, your success. But if you spend time with people who are more accomplished than you, no matter how challenging that might be, you will become more successful. Take a look at around you, and see if you need to make any changes.
12. Give Up Your Need To Be Liked
“The only way to avoid pissing people off is to do nothing important.” -- Oliver Emberton
Think of yourself as a market niche. There will be a lot of people who like that niche, and there will be individuals who don’t. And no matter what you do, you won’t be able to make the entire market like you. This is entirely natural, and there’s no need to justify yourself.
The only thing you can do is to remain authentic, improve and provide value every day, and know that the growing number of “haters” means that you are doing important things.
13. Give Up Your Dependency on Social Media & Television
“The trouble is, you think you have time” -- Jack Kornfield
Impulsive web browsing and television watching are diseases of today’s society. These two should never be an escape from your life or your goals. Unless your goals depend on either, you should minimize (or even eliminate) your dependency on them, and direct that time towards things that can enrich your life.
Remember that during the interview process, candidates are deciding whether they want to work for you just as much as you are trying to decide whether to hire them. You have only about an hour to make a good impression on the candidate. Follow these steps:
1. Write down a list of questions that directly relate to the job's responsibilities. If you don't have a job description, list the key responsibilities of the position, and then draw up a list of questions that relate to those responsibilities.
2. Ask behavioral questions as in "tell me about a time when you..." Ask for specific examples of past performance and behavior. Previous successes are a good indicator of future performance.
3. Review the candidate's resume before the interview. This may seem obvious, but by preparing your interview questions and reviewing the resume, you are showing the candidate you have taken the time to ensure a productive interview. It will also provide an insight into the writing style, and writing abilities of the candidate. Look for gaps in employment and unreasonable job hopping.
4. Outline the interview structure for the candidate. First, give a brief description of the company, and then outline the job duties. Finally, ask the applicant questions. After that, the candidate will have the opportunity to ask you questions. This sets up the parameters of the interview, keeps you both focused, and gives the candidate an idea of what to expect.
5. Don't talk too much during the interview process. Hiring managers should talk only about 30 percent of the time. Allow candidates time to describe their skills and qualifications during the interview. Before the end, make sure you've covered all your questions and you haven't missed anything.
6. Extend professional courtesies. Offer candidates a glass of water, and ask if they had difficulty finding the place. Be on time; it’s just as important as it is for the candidate to be on time. Consider giving them a tour of the office. Give them an opportunity to speak with other team members or prospective coworkers, if appropriate.
7. Watch nonverbal signals. Just as you are looking for eye contact and appropriate dress, the candidate is looking for those unspoken signals from you. Be sure your tone of voice is appropriate and professional. Clearly articulate the job's duties and the company's mission. Dress as you normally would, and pay attention to manners. You are a representative of your company and department, so make sure your actions reflect this.
8. While being polite and professional, don't get too chummy. Keep all your questions job-related. If you spend the interview chatting, you may make a hiring decision because you liked the candidate versus whether the person is truly qualified for the job.
9. Whether it's by email or phone, follow up to let candidates know whether they got the job. This is one more way of extending a professional courtesy and gives the interview process closure.
People Aren't Mushrooms. Mushrooms grow very well when kept in the dark and fed horse manure. People, on the other hand, function better when they are kept in the loop and given straight info. People Aren't Mushrooms
1. Always do the right thing, even when no one is looking
2. Open, honest communication 100% of the time.
3. Work hard throughout the day; minimize distractions and then GO HOME!
4. Take care of yourself; exercise, eat healthy and have a hobby you are passionate about.
5. Treat people with kindness and respect; even when they may not deserve it.
6. Don’t settle for anything less than 100% effort.
7. Don’t get down when things don’t go your way; things always have a way of bouncing back.
8. Rarely does anyone succeed the first time; failure is a necessary teacher.
9. Be open to learning from your mistakes and don’t repeat them!
10. Save time for love; love of nature, people and yourself!
Don't fall prey to the mindset of same ol', same ol'.......
There is a cage containing five apes. In the middle of the cage hangs a banana on a string, with a step stool below it. Before long, an ape goes up the steps and starts to climb towards the banana. As soon as the ape touches the banana, the apes are sprayed with a sudden burst of cold water. After a while, another ape makes an attempt with the same result and the process continues until all the apes are sprayed with cold water.
When the next ape tries to climb the steps for the banana, the other apes try to stop him even though no water sprays them. One of the five apes is removed from the cage and is replaced with a new one. The new ape sees the banana and tries to climb the stairs. To his horror, all of the apes attack him. After another attempt he is again attacked. He knows now that if he attempts to climb the stairs he will be assaulted.
Next, another of the original five apes is removed and replaced with a new one. The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked. The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm. Again, a third of the original five apes is replaced. The new one makes it to the stairs and is attacked as well. Two of the four apes that beat him up have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs, or why they are participating in the beating of the newest ape.
After replacing the fourth and fifth of the original apes there are no longer any apes that have been sprayed with cold water. Nevertheless, no ape ever again approaches the banana. Why not?
"Because that's the way it's always been around here."