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Discipline / Investigations

Before approving discipline, check last review

When a supervisor recommends discipline or anything else that could be viewed as an adverse employment action, be sure to check the employee’s latest evaluation before you approve it. If what the boss says is currently going on appears inconsistent with the evaluation, find out why.

When sexual harassment accusations fly, investigate and discipline right away

Here’s a lesson learned from an employer that responded correctly when an employee complained about sexual harassment. Not only did it conduct a thorough investigation that helped it win a lawsuit, but it also prevented another potential sexual harassment claim when it discovered even more egregious behavior—from the original complainant himself.

Cops: Accountant skims $333K over course of 10 years

It took 10 years, but an accounting employee of Hershey Entertainment & Resorts managed to sock away a tidy nest egg totaling more than $333,000. The only trouble, according to police and prosecutors: She built her savings account by embezzling the funds from her employer.

Categorize reasons why you impose employee discipline

You probably know you must document all disciplinary actions. Take that a step further by categorizing the discipline.

In Chicago classroom, teachable moment or racism?

A white Chicago teacher was suspended for five days after he used the N-word in what he described as a “teachable moment.”

Good documentation is the key to legally disciplining employees

How you document a discipline issue can cause problems if an employee files a lawsuit. To protect your organization, follow these guidelines:

Make sure employees know how to complain

One of the only ways to protect your company from hostile work environment lawsuits is to provide a way for employees to complain. Then investigate the allegations.

Punish bosses who don’t report harassment

Before you can fix a problem like offensive graffiti in the workplace, you have to know it exists. Short of conducting spot inspections, the only way you will know what’s going on away from headquarters and in the trenches is from employee and supervisor complaints.

Health insurer CEO axed over affair, arrest

Highmark Blue Shield has terminated its CEO in the wake of criminal charges that he attacked the husband of a former employee with whom he was having an affair.

Employee sounds threatening during hearing? OK to suspend while you investigate

Generally, employers shouldn’t react to anything an employee says during an EEOC hearing. That’s because you don’t want to face a retaliation complaint for participating in the hearing. However, there are practical limits to what employers have to tolerate.