What Does At-Will Employment Really Mean?

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man carrying a box of office supplies

Throughout my HR career, I have advised managers and business owners on disciplinary matters for employees, as well as employee terminations.  One frustration that I’ve often seen from my clients is that I require a valid reason, as well as documentation, before I give the green light on any involuntary separation.

“But this is an at-will state!  That means I can fire any employee, at any time, and I don’t even need a reason!”  – A lot of managers

The above “quote” paraphrases an argument I hear frequently.

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Navigate Change Through Emotional Intelligence

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navigate-change-with-emotional-intelligence“The only thing that is constant is change.” – Heraclitus 

Change is ever-present in our lives.  We are always growing and evolving, and our situations and circumstances change, sometimes in an instant.  Change can be frustrating, hard to understand, and difficult to embrace – especially at work.

When processes, systems, or team structures change, how do you react?  Do you openly support change the instant you learn of it, or do you resist in some way?  Most people are at least somewhat resistant to changes at work, at least initially.   Change often evokes an emotional response. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always serve us well, especially in the workplace.

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Listen! It Makes All the Difference

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listen-it-makes-all-the-differenceOne of my favorite things to do as an HR Manager at Staff One HR is deliver training to my clients, their management staff, and their employees on a variety of HR and management topics.  Recently, my colleague Marisa Eckberg created and delivered a four-part webinar series* on leadership, and I’ve had the pleasure of presenting the material she created during in-person training sessions with several of my own clients.

During the course of delivering these training sessions on leadership, I’ve asked myself what it is that makes a leader truly great.  There are several important factors, including trust, respect, integrity, communication skills, and the ability to problem-solve, but in my opinion, the most important attribute of a truly great leader is his or her ability to listen. Continue reading “Listen! It Makes All the Difference”

EAPs Provide Support for Employees In Crisis

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In mid-2018, within the same week, celebrities Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain were sadly found to have died by suicide.  As people around the world mourned the loss of these icons, we also were reminded that anyone (no matter how wealthy, famous, or seemingly happy) can be affected by feelings of hopelessness and despair, as well as suicidal thoughts.

According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US.  Each year, 44,965 Americans die by suicide.  On average, there are 123 suicides per day, occurring in all demographic groups, for a variety of reasons.

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Answer These 4 Questions for a Great Company Party

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Company-holiday-partyWho doesn’t love a good holiday party?  Hosting company holiday parties is a great way for employers to bring people together and celebrate their accomplishments at the end of the year.  They are an effective tool for promoting employee engagement and connection among staff members.  Employees have an opportunity to get to know one another, relax, and have fun.  It sounds great, but employers who host holiday parties can be held liable for alcohol-related accidents, wage claims, and harassment claims.

Careful planning can help minimize your risk, so before you send your invitations, ask yourself these questions: Continue reading “Answer These 4 Questions for a Great Company Party”

Should Employees Work While “Out Sick?”

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Should employees work from home while out sickFall is upon us!  While the thought of pumpkin spice lattes and cooler weather may bring a smile, don’t forget that this also means that flu season is close at hand.  Employers should ensure that they are prepared with a solid plan on how to handle requests from ill employees who want to work from home.

Increasing numbers of employers have begun to offer telecommuting options to employees as a job perk.  But what about employees who want to work from home while they are sick?  Should it be allowed? Continue reading “Should Employees Work While “Out Sick?””