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Productivity / Performance

Use objective measures to make firing decisions

02/01/2012
If you terminate subpar workers, it goes without saying that you must be prepared to show they were, in fact, poor performers. Do so by using objective performance measures. Let the facts and figures speak for themselves.

OK to insist on initial retirement request

02/01/2012
When an employer doesn’t have a set policy on whether an employee can change his mind about retiring, refusing to rescind a retirement request isn’t enough to support a discrimination or retaliation lawsuit.

Team dysfunction: Why it happens and how to fix it

01/27/2012

Managers can bring the most intelligent, creative people to their departments, but if the employees aren’t able to work as a team, the department’s productivity will suffer. If your team isn’t firing on all cylinders, it’s important to identify the reasons why … and what you can do to overcome the dysfunction.

Take steps to make a ‘newbie’ feel welcome

01/26/2012
Just as communication at the beginning of a marriage can indicate if it will end in divorce, the foundation established early on with a new hire is crucial to productivity, engagement and retention. Onboarding programs yield the best results if they cover these five areas: clarification, connection, culture, compliance and check back.

Flex drives customer satisfaction, record profits

01/26/2012
Tax services firm Ryan & Co. measures employees’ work performance by results achieved, not hours worked. The result: an ultra-flexible workplace that allows employees to choose their hours, where they work and how much time to devote to work each day.

Step by step: Becoming a great manager, the Google way

01/25/2012
Google, the king of search engines, recently set out on a search of its own—to identify the qualities that make the highest quality managers at Google Inc., and then to replicate those qualities across the entire company. The end result: a simple, yet ele­gant, list of eight management practices that the best Google managers consistently do.

How to become a great manager, the Google way

01/23/2012
Google, the king of search engines, recently set out on a search of its own—to identify the qualities that make the highest quality managers at Google Inc., and then to replicate those qualities across the entire company. The end result: a simple, yet ele­gant, list of eight management practices that the best Google managers consistently do.

‘Garage-sale overdose’ and 12 other outrageous reasons for missing work

01/10/2012

Have you seen a lot more empty seats around the workplace these days? When asked to share the most unusual excuses their employees have given for missing work, employers offered the following real-life examples …

Special performance measures deviate from usual practice? Be sure to document reason

01/09/2012
Courts don’t want to second-guess employers unless they feel they have no alternative. When an employee charges discrimination based on different treatment because he belongs to a protected class, the court first looks at the employer’s rules and tries to see if they have been enforced consistently.

No real effort to improve? It’s time to fire

01/09/2012
Some employees don’t take direction well. One approach turns such employees around: Insist that the employee sign on to a performance improvement plan. If he refuses to cooperate, document that refusal. You can then safely terminate the employee for insubordination.