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Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Why Panera should settle lawsuit regarding racism

Even if ex-manager's claim that he was fired for making a black man a cashier is false, the franchise owner will lose if case goes to court

To find out why, read here: Why Panera should settle lawsuit regarding racism

Monday, November 07, 2011

Is your chronically ill coworker just gaming the system?

Dear Evil HR Lady,

Due to your advice, I landed a great job about a year ago. There is only one problem. I work for a small department, and we have a coworker, Jim, who is a very nice guy with a serious absentee problem. For example, this year to date, he has called in sick 32 times. (We have a shared calendar where we track sick days, vacation, events etc.) In addition to calling in sick, he is habitually late and during winter, he frequently calls in on snowy days and says he can't make it in. (We have another staff member who lives in the same area who has no trouble.) Last week, during a rainy morning, he called to say that he was stuck in traffic so he was going to go back home and wait and try to come in again around 10 or 10:30 (he was due in at 8:30.) This is not the first time he has done this. He has also been caught sleeping in his office multiple times.

He is eligible for the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) because he has irritable bowl syndrome (IBS). This affects me because Jim is supposed to work the closing shift with me. When he is gone, I am left alone and have to do all the closing duties. Our current manager says that nothing can be done because of FMLA. We're in the process of hiring a new director.

First, does this seem like a legitimate FMLA situation? Second, when the new director gets hired, should we say something to him/ her about this situation or just let them see if for themselves? We don't want to come off as complainers but this is bothering us all. With such a small staff, anytime one of us has to take a vacation or sick day, it's always in the back of our minds, "What if Jim calls in, too?"

To read click here: Is your chronically ill coworker just gaming the system?

Friday, November 04, 2011

Why employers settle sexual harassment claims

Herman Cain's employer quietly settled sexual misconduct complaints, but does that mean he was guilty?

To find out why employers settle sexual harassment claims, click on the link.

This will take you to CBS Money Watch, which is where I reside after they shut down BNET. Supposedly, I will have my own page in the near future, but right now I'm mixed in with Leadership.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Managing Employees: 5 Scary Small-Business Mistakes

I'm excited to announce that I've signed on with It's a site devoted to small business, so if you are a small business owner or work for a small business, this an excellent site for you.

My first column is up today, and of course, it has a Halloween theme. (Because, as you might have noticed, I love Halloween.)

Tonight when all the trick-or-treaters are out, trying to scare you into coughing up some candy (good candy, please, none of those Bit o' Honey or Necco Wafers), I'll know what really scares small business owners: employees.

Yes, your employees can make or break your business, but battling zombies can be easier than managing people.

To read more click here: Managing Employees: 5 Scary Small-Business Mistakes

10 Signs Your HR Department Has Been Taken Over By Zombies

I got some awesome suggestions over the weekend, and I've used some of these and some of my own in this BNET article: 10 Signs Your HR Department Has Been Taken Over By Zombies

Add yours in the comments here, in the comments at BNET or on Twitter using the hashtag #HRZombies.

Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

HR Zombies

Since Halloween is almost upon us, I have a question? Just how would you know if your HR department had been taken over by zombies?

My thought: When you get your open enrollment form, there are only questions about how fresh your brain is.

Add your answers to the comments, or tweet it with the hashtag #HRZombies.

I'm looking forward to some awesome answers.

Friday, October 28, 2011

I Have Applied to Every Job and Still Can't Get Hired

Dear Evil HR Lady,

Thanks for your columns; they greatly demystify the world of HR.

I left a job eight months ago because I was being bullied. Ever since, I have been looking for work. I have applied everywhere, including fast food restaurants. I have experience in a lot of areas, with engineering being the most current area that I am studying. I have more than ten years experience in clerical work and even three years in science laboratory work. I complete the MS in Engineering this upcoming spring.

Nevertheless, my problem is not solved; I don’t have a job. I have obtained several interviews that often appeared to have worked well only to receive notice that the position has been cancelled or a candidate with “more experience” has been selected. However, in many of these cases, I personally knew the applicant that was selected and usually, it is someone who has just graduate high school or college with no experience and no internships in the field. In terms of fast food positions, students with no high school diploma have been chosen over me and I have some experience in the fast food industry and I have taken some college-level nutrition courses as well.

I’m not complaining because I understand that the economy is rough; I am only trying to figure out the reason that I appear to be so unmarketable to employers. In addition, because I often hear that it is not “what you know, but who you know.” I have tried networking. However, I have been unsuccessful in this area as well. Many of the people that I have worked with in the past have seemingly genuinely offered me their help to find positions. Yet, when I write to these people or call them, they seem rude and disillusioned; thus, they offer no help. Many of these are people that I talked to quite often while I was employed, but now it appears that they do not want to be involved with me at all. I don’t think that I am “rubbing them the wrong way” because I am very soft-spoken and polite and I have been told this by many people for most of my life. Furthermore, this is the only time in my life in which I have been treated in this manner by so many people.

I have tried everything that I can possible concoct to obtain employment. I have applied to every position that I can possibly imagine. I have even applied to clean the restrooms at local businesses and I was rejected.

To read the answer click here: I Have Applied to Every Job and Still Can't Get Hired

5 Steps to Taking Charge of Your Career

Is your career stagnating? Are others moving ahead of you? Here are 5 things you can do to put yourself back on the ladder to success.

To read more, click here: 5 Steps to Taking Charge of Your Career

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

New Study: Do Men Make Better Bosses?

A new study says that legal secretaries prefer to work for men. Is that something unique to the law, or is that a universal principle? Are men better bosses?

To read click here: New Study: Do Men Make Better Bosses?

Monday, October 24, 2011

Breastfeeding At Work

Dear Evil HR Lady,

I need advice. Last year I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. I went back to work Feb. 1st of this year as a part time employee. I am nursing and pump once daily at work. Prior to leaving on maternity leave I informed my employer that I would be returning in Feb as a part time employee and would need a place to pump. The place was provided and a time was agreed by both of us.

Lately, the hours that are busiest have changed and we have lost a few employees-are now understaffed. My employer wants me to change my hours to coincide with the busiest time of day. Unfortunately, I have no child care for those hours and she has given me 2 weeks to find someone to care for him. If I cannot work those hours then she wants me to resign.

On top of changing my hours she is just now deciding to take my health benefits away (announced that she was only doing me a courtesy to let me keep it up to this point) and she is not allowing me to pump anymore after my hours change since it would seriously disrupt the operations of the employer, which is a way of not allowing me to pump through California Labor Code 1032.

She has publicly informed me of the issues she has with me (in front of coworkers) and even stated that I was taking advantage of her nice actions. She has issues with me pumping and still needing time in the work day to eat ( Eating while working had never been an issue at our office-she prefers this so no one clocks out). Until I change my hours I have agreed to clock out for pumping sessions and not eat at all for the 5 hours I work Mon-Fri.

She has been asking me to fix other issues at work and I am feeling harassed. She has sent me e-mails, texts, & spoken to me in person about different issues. I feel like I am walking on egg shells everyday and am just overall uncomfortable with her around. Unfortunately, we are a small medical practice (with only 5 employees total) and she is the only doctor/owner, so I deal with her daily. She has a history of verbally attacking employees and constantly breathing down their backs (Ive seen it happen to others & have been a victim before). I don’t know what to do except try my best to work with her requests but I want to know my rights so I can stand up to her with concrete facts. Help please.

To read the answer click here: Breastfeeding At Work

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Employee vs Employer Bill of Rights

Who need a Bill of Rights more? Employees or employers?

To read an join the debate click here: Employee vs Employer Bill of Rights

Monday, October 17, 2011

Bosses: Let Your Employees Take Vacation

Should you go on vacation? Should you let your employees take vacation? Yes, and yes. Here's why.

To read further click here: Bosses: Let Your Employees Take Vacation