The HR Specialist

Issue: How deeply do you want to get involved with employees’ personal lives?
Risk: Becoming a sounding board for every personal problem will eat up your workday (and drain you …

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Issue: A new Supreme Court ruling ratchets up your vulnerability to federal age-discrimination lawsuits.
Risk: Employees no longer need to show a “smoking gun.” Even policies that inadvertently discriminate can …

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Issue: Can you place conditions on employment that aren’t related to the person’s ability to perform the job?
Risk: Courts may see such restrictions as illegal “employment blackmail.”
Action: …

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Issue: Your organization has a responsibility to provide a safe environment for employees and customers.
Risk: Weak security efforts may lead to a “negligent security” lawsuit, an increasing problem for …

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Issue: As the work force ages, more employees are suffering age-related injuries that appear to be work related.
Risk: You may wind up paying, in insurance and workers’ comp costs, …

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Issue: Business and government leaders will unveil a new national job-readiness test next year that you can give entry-level applicants.
Benefit: Cut down on bad entry-level hires. Spot high-school grads …

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You may dread confronting employees face to face about performance issues. But employees are far more likely to accept your critique and commit to improvement if you present those problems in a fair, concrete and “problem-solving” manner. Use these six tips as a framework to guide your discussion: 1. Describe the problem in specific, nonjudgmental [...]

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Issue: How to structure break schedules to maximize productivity and safety.
Benefit: Allowing more frequent, but shorter, breaks are smarter than giving longer infrequent ones, new research shows.
Action: …

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Issue: The night-shift population is rising, and shift workers are logging more overtime hours.
Risk: Those dual trends damage productivity, causing more accidents and hurting employees’ health, all of which …

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Issue: Gaining more value from your exit interviews.
Risk: Intelligence gathered often falls into a “black hole,” so mistakes are repeated and legal land mines are overlooked.
Action: Ask …

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