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Payroll Today

APA Congress Day 1: 5 things to know when cleaning up (other people’s) messes

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Alice Gilman

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in Payroll Today

Bette Davis may or may not have vamped “What a mess,” but sooner or later you will encounter a mess, according to Jodi Parsons, CPP, Director, Payroll for the World Series winners, the Kansas City Royals Baseball Club, and Billy Meyerkorth, CPP, Manager, Human Resources Operations, Cetera Financial Group.

Parsons and Meyerkorth gave attendees at the American Payroll Association’s 34th Annual Congress, held this year in Nashville, Tenn., some pointers on cleaning up messes.

Clean up on aisle one

Messes aren’t bad, they’re construction projects, Parsons said. You should look at a challenge and see an opportunity to have an impact on your organization, she added. Both gave these pearls of wisdom:

  • Maintain composure. If you’re not calm, your staff and, worse, the general employee population, will start panicking.

  • Identify your crisis team. Who’s specifically in charge of resolving the crisis? And block out time during the week to resolve the crisis. Further, Parsons said, ignore what’s causing the problem; pay employees first and then go back and analyze.

  • Overcommunicate with employees. That way, employees will know that the issue is being resolved. Idea: Meyerkorth suggested smile-and-dial—calling every employee in the company and telling them to contact you if they have pay problems.

  • Know your choices. Don’t be so quick to take the second best choice. Sometimes, according to Parsons, it’s better to stick with what you know, all the problems, and work arounds, included.

  • Appreciate your team. Thank your team once the problem is resolved. And go further, Parsons said, by also thanking those who worked on the day-to-day payroll tasks while you were in crisis mode.

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