The HR Specialist

It happens to top male managers with the best of intentions: You evaluate a poor-performing female employee and, instead of citing her problems straightforwardly, you unknowingly ignore or soft-pedal them. This is a fairly common problem. Research indicates that male managers give female employees performance reviews that are not as forthright as those they give [...]

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While it’s important to have well-documented reasons for terminating employees, the manner in which you perform the firing can also save your employer (and possibly the supervisor) a trip to court. Use these four guidelines to fire with grace and reduce the risk of legal fallout: 1. Keep it private. Discharge employees in closed-door meetings. [...]

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Issue: Establishing a Web site that acts as an online home for your organization’s former employees.
Benefit: Such alumni sites help you recruit former employees (boomerangs), generate referrals and build …

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As part of his age-bias lawsuit, James Halloran claimed that his employer’s HR director signed Halloran’s signature to the bottom of a negative performance review. At trial, the company admitted to …

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Issue: More health insurance companies are offering plans that include Health Savings Accounts (HSAs).
Benefit: HSA popularity will take off in 2005-2006. And more insurers will translate into better plan …

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Issue: New federal guidelines require all organizations to establish an ethics-training program.
Benefit: By taking the lead on this issue, you’ll cut the organization’s liability risk and impress the brass. …

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Issue: Companies that lack any kind of security system run a 4.5 times higher risk of burglary and vandalism.
Benefit: Small-scale security systems have become more affordable and easier to …

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Issue: Overburdening employees because of their language abilities.
Risk: Relying too heavily on bilingual employees could spark a national-origin bias lawsuit.
Action: Remind supervisors to be on guard against …

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Issue: Which mental impairments are considered “disabilities” covered by the ADA?
Risk: An employee’s troubles interacting with co-workers may, by itself, allow the employee to claim disability status.
Action: …

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Reason: The federal government is reaching out to Hispanic people to make them more aware of their workplace rights. Latest effort: The EEOC launched a new Spanish-language version of its Web …

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