What Do Employees Want From Their Managers?

Do your employees want you to be an inspirational leader, or maybe they’d prefer you to be the quiet problem solver or better yet the compassionate mentor?

Some employees look for a hands-on-boss who is always stopping by, asking “How’s it going?” Other employees would prefer not to see their boss quite so frequently. And then there are those employees who wish they didn’t see their boss more than once a year at the performance reviews.

Different employees crave different things from their managers. Unless one of your skills is mind reading, it’s difficult and even downright impossible to know exactly what your staff wants from you.

There have been numerous surveys and books written about this very topic to help managers provide environments that are motivating and conducive to productivity while keeping employees happy.

Traits or characteristics that matter most to employees are honesty and integrity from their managers, lies and secrets can kill a manager’s credibility. Employees want their managers to be fair and to hold all employees accountable to the same standards. They want to trust and be trusted by their manager. Employees want to be able to count on their manager when needed and to be a part of their manager’s team, be asked to contribute ideas and solutions. Shutting employees out will shut them up—and heading for the door.

Managers should be genuine. Employees sometimes spend more time with their boss than with their families and they don’t want a phony. They want to be appreciated for who they are and what they do. They want to hear a “Thank you” or “Great job” and more importantly, employees want their manager to listen, understand and respond to their questions, ideas, suggestions and contributions. Managers should be more of a sponge, rather than a brick wall.

None of us is born knowing how to be a manager and it can be difficult to decipher exactly what employees want or need. Not all employees look for the same traits in a manager and its best to understand what each individual employee craves and then try to fulfill those needs.

In the end, more satisfied employees stick around longer, are more loyal, do better work and make a manager’s job much easier.

Payroll Services

HR Practrices,LLC-Human Resource Planning and ManagementPayroll Services is the cornerstone of a well-managed organization’s effort to control expenses, maintain growth and profitability, and keep your staff motivated about their work is to maintain accurate and low-cost payroll services. Here are some of the programs we work with and services we offer:

  • ADP HR eXPert
  • ADP Pay eXPert
  • ADP Reporting
  • Report Smith
  • Quick Books
  • End-to-End payroll processing
  • Set up custom fields
  • Employee Benefits/Deductions
  • Input deductions and taxes
  • Create payroll batches/files
  • Preview payroll reports
  • Create and analyze payroll reports
  • Input T & E reimbursable expenses
  • Import 401k changes
  • Transmit payroll
  • Employer Tax Compliance
  • Maintain New Hire & Employee payroll files
  • Upload hourly employee time and attendance

Human Resource Planning and Management

HR Practices, LLC  can help you in all of these key areas Human Resources and Long Term Planning to help increase your organization’s efficiency and profitability including: Business Planning and Organization Management,   Succession Planning,    Risk Management,    Payroll Processing and tax compliance,    Proactive Legal Compliance to prevent problems from developing,    Maintain communication and productivity in times of transition and economic stress,    Compensation Analysis: keep your organization competitive, motivated, and effective,    Grievance procedures,    Benefits Programs cost/benefit analysis,    Implementation of electronic and virtual forms to support policies and procedures. Additionally, our work Eliminates your paper burden and help your organization to “Go Green“ and provides   Record Retention improvement and   Worker’s Compensation compliance and support.


Dress Code and Hot Weather – Temperatures are Rising

Summer is here and the temperature has been rising to over 90 degrees. Where has the dress codes gone?

Now that it’s getting warm, okay, it is getting “hot”, businesses are seeing some employees who are wearing less and less to work every day. While it may not bother you, the Employer, it may well bother some of your employees who may be a little uncomfortable with the skimpy attire of their coworkers.

How should employers address this lack of “professional apparel”? As with most things that fall under the heading “best practices,” the key here is to remember general employment laws, consistency, and common sense.

Employers should approach employees’ attire with the same degree of objective scrutiny with which they approach other visual and verbal incidents in the workplace (such as workers wearing t-shirts with inappropriate sayings or displaying pictures on their desks and bulletin boards).

Although you may think that some people look better in skimpy clothes than others, your opinion is irrelevant to what you should do about improper workplace attire. If you address inappropriate clothing with one person, make sure you address it with everyone else who is wearing something similar. Most importantly, use common sense. If you have to rationalize whether an employee’s attire is appropriate for work, chances are good that it is not, and you need to address it.

The best thing an employer can do to prevent employees’ summer attire from becoming a problem is to adopt and publish a dress code policy. If your employees know what’s acceptable, they have an opportunity to comport themselves accordingly.

A dress code policy will also help you objectively discern what’s acceptable. For the most part, employers are free to adopt and enforce rules governing how employees must dress. However, there are some important factors to consider when setting workplace dress codes.

Rules regulating appearance, whether they’re based on safety factors or simply traditional values, are fine as long as they don’t discriminate unfairly against a particular group. Enforce your dress codes and other appearance-related rules with the awareness that they should be evenly weighted toward all employees and applied consistently when violations occur.

Summer Internship, end of the spring semester and college students are heading home.

This weekend is the start when many college students are returning home with the end of spring semester. It’s also the time many companies offer internships to “out of school” students. Unpaid internships are universally seen as great opportunities for students to acquire valuable job skills, experience, providing genuine and verifiable learning opportunities and giving the student intern a considerable advantage over those competing for jobs right out of college.

The downside to hiring unpaid interns for employers is navigating the potential mine field commonly known as the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) making sure you are not violating the law. Misclassifying an employee as an unpaid intern could deny the employee from earning the federal minimum wage as well as the potential for overtime wages. Violation of the FLSA could conceivably result in costly litigation, civil fines and possibly criminal prosecution for the employer.

Employers can however take steps to insure that their classifications comply with the FLSA. A well designed internship program is one that complies with the Department of Labor (DOL) guidelines for unpaid internships. To insure compliance and potentially avoid problems, an employer should implement an unpaid internship program which includes the following DOL guidelines:

• Provide training similar to that which would be given in an educational environment and which is primarily for the benefit of the intern;

• Provide the intern with close and constant supervision by regular employees; and

• Make sure the intern understands the internship is unpaid and that there is no guarantee of regular employment at the conclusion of the internship.

To ensure proper classification of unpaid interns employers should:

• Work with educational institutions to ensure that the internship is academically oriented for the benefit of students;

• Make sure interns do not perform the tasks that regular employees would normally perform; and

• Put the terms of the unpaid internship and have the intern acknowledge the internship is unpaid and that he or she is not guaranteed regular employment

Having an internship program with the above guidelines in place may protect employers from liability for FLSA violations arising out of internship programs.

Sometimes you need a Terminator!

HR Practices, LLC - How to fire a friendFriendship is a bond that should be unbreakable, but when you’re in the difficult position of having to fire a friend or an employee you’re close to, your friendship will definitely get tested. Along with your own disappointment that your friend hasn’t done what he or she was hired to do or perhaps pity and sadness if your friend is simply a victim of operational cuts, is the fact that you’re responsible for terminating your friend’s employment as a boss, not as a friend. Whatever the reason, this can be a very painful experience for both parties, and if mishandled, it can be destructive to your friendship. While it’s not easy separating the two different relationships you have with this person and then following formal business practices for terminating employees, it’s necessary to achieve a fair outcome and one that will hopefully keep your friendship intact.



The first holiday weekend of the summer season is over and now is a good time for Human Resources to take a step back and focus on the big picture. Take a look at a few potential legal snares that very well might crop up in the second half of 2012.

Retaliation – Employers are learning that when an employee cannot win discrimination, harassment or other type of lawsuit against the company, these employees are finding it easier to win retaliation claims. Retaliation claims have become the most frequent and costly cases being heard in the courts.

Are you facing a retaliation claim? First normal response – anger. However, don’t get angry, step back, impose a “cooling off” period after a charge is made and clearly think about your response. Remember – you not only have to deal with the employee who made the charge, but there’s a potential you may have to deal with a new class of “suers” – those who have an interest in the employee, such as significant others and family members.

HarassmentA new type of harassment claim is on the horizon, bullying in the workplace. Companies would do well to revise their harassment policy to include this new form of harassment. Your policy should be broad enough to encompass this non-traditional type of harassment which is causing an influx of new claims. Remember to issue your updated handbook and distribute to employees.

Social Media– Here we go again, Social Media’s in the headlines. Your company may already have a social media policy, however, it is time to update it. Most employers ban employees from discussing wages and other working conditions with co-workers in any forum, including on their Facebook pages. However, thanks to the National Labor Relations Board, and its edict to all companies, it is now illegal. Friendly tip: Don’t friend the NLRB on Facebook.

Performance ReviewsPerformance reviews continue to come back to haunt companies especially in the hands of plaintiff’s attorneys. To minimize risk, performance reviews should be simple, clear and truthful, even if it hurts. And, this is a big one, make performance reviews a continuous process not a one-time event.

Overtime Beware of the new “overtime” trap. Providing company smartphones to a non-exempt employee could cost you overtime wages. If a non-exempt employee checks “anything” on the company smart phone after hours, it is entirely possible they could be “on the clock” earning overtime.

Social Media and Your Employees.

Employee access to social mediaSocial Media and your employees! Social Media has not only knocked on the door but come in and has taken a seat!

By now most employers are “or should be” aware that their employees are visiting at least one and probably more social networking sites either outside of the workplace or during
work hours.

Concerned with what their employees post on these sites many employers are incorporating “Social Media” policies in their handbooks. Will your social media policy pass the grade if audited by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB)?

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in response to employee complaints has asked several regional offices to submit employer social media policies for review.

In the past the NLRB took the position that social media postings were the same as “water cooler conversations – conversations between employees at work” and in general should be governed by the “old” rules under the NLRB.

An important distinction however, between social media and water cooler conversations – social media is not in the workplace, rather it goes out over the Internet and comments may not necessarily be directed towards the workplace, employer or employees.

Realizing social media goes out into the world, the NLRB recently reviewed several cases that concerned such policies and may be adjusting its’ standards (employers don’t get too excited, NLRB isn’t drastically changing the rules) since such statements have the potential to cause greater harm to the workplace than water cooler conversations.

As a precaution your handbook should have both a Social Media policy and an Anti-Harassment policy. A few statements to include in your policies:

  • Company “prohibits employees from sharing confidential and proprietary company information on line”;
  • Company “prohibits employees from using vulgar or obscene language on line or posting intimidating or harassing materials (make sure to use NLRB approved language such as “prohibiting use of social media to post or display comments about coworkers, supervisors or the employer that are vulgar, obscene, threatening, intimidating, harassing or a violation of the employer’s workplace policies against discrimination, harassment or hostility on account of age, race, religion, sex, ethnicity, nationality, disability or other protected class, status or characteristic”;
  • Company states “online harassment is a serious matter and treated the same as all other harassment claims”

As a precaution any handbook or policy should be reviewed by legal counsel.

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