Whatever Happened to the Company Picnic?

Remember the company picnics of yesteryear? The large outings where employees and their families would come together, and for a few hours, you’d feel that you were all part of the same family? That kind of culture, the one that celebrates togetherness and teamwork, that is what separates the average company from a great one. Continue reading

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Are You Ready for Vacation? What’s the Difference between Vacation and PTO?

When it comes to time off—especially paid time off (PTO)—employees generally want a good idea of their company’s policy on the matter. Do you offer any type of pay for time away from work? How many days? How can it be used? The list of questions goes on, and while they can be answered simply enough, there’s one question in particular that comes up more often than the others: Continue reading

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Flowers, Hay Fever, and Intermittent Absences: What’s a Manager to Do?

Spring is a time of renewal, and coincidentally, intermittent absences in the workplace. Plenty of people suffer from allergies, which can be a valid excuse for having to call in sick (especially if the Hay Fever gets out of hand or you’re a chronic sufferer). It’s a part of life and nothing that should surprise the average manager. Continue reading

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What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You: Employee Regulations and Employment Laws

If you have even one employee on your payroll, you are subject to more federal, state, and local employment laws than you probably realize. Quick: if you have an employee, can you answer any of the following questions?

  • Do you know if you’re in compliance with the law?
  • If one of the many local, state, or federal agencies comes knocking on your door, do you know how to protect yourself?
  • Is your paperwork in order?
  • Do you even have paperwork?

Continue reading

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5 Ways to Do April Fools’ Day at the Office

Most people enjoy laughter, especially when it happens at the office. Humor can lighten the mood and make the workday seem manageable when it might otherwise be dragging. April Fools’ Day presents a prime opportunity to inject laughter back into the office, but it can be easy to cross the line and have a prank turn into harassment. Continue reading

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Holidays at the Office: Remember That Not Everyone Celebrates…

When you think about work holidays, you might imagine Christmas parties or free vacation days; but the reality is, not everyone actively celebrates the holidays. While anyone can get behind taking a paid day off, they might not be as happy if holiday decorations and celebrations are happening at the office. It’s important to remember that not everyone celebrates Easter, Christmas, Halloween, etcetera—forgetting this could cause some employees to feel offended and uncomfortable. Continue reading

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Having Fun at Work and Beating the “Winter Doldrums”

Whether it’s seasonal affective disorder or you’re simply bummed out because of the cold, gray skies, and snow, winter can be a tough time to stay productive in the workplace. We all handle the season differently but injecting a bit of fun into the workday can certainly help beat the winter doldrums. Continue reading

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Love: A Fine Thing (But Maybe Not at the Office!)

To quote John Paul Young, “Love is in the air, everywhere I look around,” and that holds true even at the office. People can fall in love, flirt, and meet future partners anywhere they go and (un)fortunately, that also includes the workplace. Continue reading

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How to Pull Off a Successful Performance Evaluation

It should be no surprise that most people, from managers and employees to a fair number of HR professionals would rather see the performance review become a practice of the past. They can dredge up anxieties, compromise productivity and company morale, and wind up causing a whole mess of trouble if handled incorrectly. That being said, there are some invaluable reasons for perfecting the process and integrating it into a company’s standard practices. Continue reading

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The Importance of Setting S.M.A.R.T. Goals

Goal setting is one of the biggest ways to improve the workplace—from communication across teams to more effective manager-employee relationships and increased worker efficiency. Goals also help create a sense of accountability and allow individuals to assess progress they’re making along the way. In this way, setting goals and creating performance evaluation strategies go hand in hand. To effectively evaluate an employee’s performance, you have to start by setting smarter goals. Continue reading

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