HR Management

Mega-Mistakes Managers Make

Yesterday’s Advisor covered hiring mistakes Today we look at other common goofs managers make and a BLR program uniquely designed to help smaller HR departments avoid them.

Yesterday, we described major hiring mistakes companies make, per the research of top consultancy, Gevity HR. These include relying exclusively on traditional sources, failing to market your organization to candidates, and waiting too long to fill a position. But how about after the hire? Here are a few big-dollar mistakes that managers make.

1. Failure to train. It’s a refrain you hear again and again in court, in discipline meetings, and at appraisal time: “Oh gosh, I didn’t know I was supposed to do (or not do) that.” Training is the key to encouraging appropriate behaviors and preventing inappropriate (and illegal) ones. If those behaviors stray into the illegal, courts look to see what training you’ve delivered and how good a job you’ve done at delivering it. A strong training program shows you’ve made reasonable efforts and will often count in your favor. And while you’re training, don’t forget to include supervisors and managers. Legally, they represent your company. Small missteps can bring multimillion-dollar lawsuits.

2. Failure to appraise honestly. Too many supervisors and managers almost automatically give “good” rankings to every employee. It’s easy to do it that way, but it’s meaningless for management purposes, and if any of those employees challenges a termination for poor performance, you’re going to look silly explaining a string of “good” ratings.

3. Failure to act. “I’m sure the inappropriate behavior will stop if we just hold off.” If you hear (or say) that, danger! You’re condoning bad behavior. As soon as you are “on notice” of harassment, questionable activity, or safety or pay issues investigate and take appropriate action.

Many managers of small HR departments have found the help they need in a unique BLR product—Managing an HR Department of One. Examine it at no cost or risk for 30 days. Click for info.

4. Failure to document. Document, document, document! Isn’t that the tired, old mantra of HR? Guess what, it’s the new mantra, too, and it’s expanded because now it includes e-mail. Documents that are incomplete, incorrect, embarrassing, or just plain missing are the cause of many an expensive legal downfall.

So many ways to get in trouble,—especially if you’re in a small HR department. In the smaller organization you’re it, from strategic planning to recruiting to recordkeeping. How can you do it all?

We asked our editors if there was any special help directed right at the smaller—or even one-person—HR office. They came back with our recently published special program, Managing an HR Department of One. Other publishers may offer similar materials, but whichever you consider, make sure that these features are included:

—Discussion of how HR supports organizational goals. This should include how to probe for what your top management really wants, and how to build credibility in your ability to deliver it.

Hard to run a smaller HR department? Yes, but it’s a lot easier with BLR’s Managing an HR Department of One. Try it at no cost or risk for 30 days. Click for info.

—Overview of compliance responsibilities. The BLR book contains a really useful 2-page chart of 21 separate laws HR needs to comply with. These range from the well-known Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and FMLA to lesser known, but equally critical rules such as Executive Order 11246. Also included are federal and state posting requirements. Proper postings are among the first things a visiting inspector looks for … especially now that the minimum wage will change repeatedly in the next 2 years.

—Training guidelines. No matter what your company size, expect to have to do training. Some of it is required by law. Some of it is just good business sense. Your reference should walk you through how to train efficiently and effectively, for the least time and money. The BLR book does.

—Prewritten forms, policies, and checklists. These are enormous work-savers! Managing an HR Department of One has 46 such forms, from job apps and background check sheets to performance appraisals and leave requests, in both paper and on CD. The CD lets you easily customize any form with your company’s name and specifics.

If you’d like to look at what Managing an HR Department of One covers, click the Table of Contents link below. Or better yet, take a look at the entire program. We’ll send it to you for 30 days’ evaluation in your own office with no obligation to buy. Click the link below, and we’ll be happy to make the arrangements.

Download Table of Contents

Work in a Small HR Department?
Then you need special help, and we’ve got it! All the compliance info, prewritten forms, and guidance you need, all designed for a department as small as one. That’s why we call our program Managing an HR Department of One. Try it free for 30 days! Read more.