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When accused harasser says he was harassed, weigh everyone’s credibility–and motive for lying

July 15, 2011

It can and does happen when an employee complains that she has been sexually harassed: In the course of the ensuing internal investigation, the alleged harasser says that, in fact, he was harassed—and the alleged victim was the real harasser. What should you do?

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‘Is it because I’m black?’

July 14, 2011
An employee suddenly says, “You rate my production as average and tell me I should do better. My numbers are the same as Mary’s, but you gave her an excellent rating. Does it have anything to do with the fact that I’m black and Mary’s white?” You be the judge:
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State by State 2011 Short-Term Leave Laws

July 13, 2011
Key: Employers covered Leave/maximum time available       California All employers Unpaid, as needed for school conference for suspended child; accrued leave for sick child Employers of 25 employees or more at same site Unpaid; up to 40 hours per child a year (8 hours a month) for school activities Employers of 50 employees [...]
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Sports apparel firm pushes fitness, team spirit

July 5, 2011

Baltimore-based sports apparel company Under Armour doesn’t require its 3,363 employees to be athletes, but it does look for new hires with a love of sports and fitness. Reason: Team spirit is core to the company’s culture.

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Are you ready to punish a slacking employee? First, have a talk

June 29, 2011

HR professionals or managers should always discuss performance or behavior problems with employees before disciplining them. After all, employees often admit their mistakes when confronted directly. And any admissions can be used later to support your disciplinary decision if the employee claims discrimination.

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Face-to-face counseling helps employees grasp benefits

June 27, 2011
On average, 30% to 40% of an employee’s total compensation is wrapped up in benefits. Unfortunately, that information is often invisible to employees. The most effective way to make sure employees really know about the benefits you offer, their value and why they’re a great deal is to tell them face-to-face.
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Good faith wins court cases! Don’t use investigation to trap employee

June 24, 2011

Employers get lots of leeway when it comes to terminating employees. For example, courts generally uphold firing someone for breaking a rule as long as the employer reasonably believed the employee broke the rule—even if it turns out he did not. But when it looks as if the employer tried to trick the employee into breaking a rule, judges won’t look the other way.

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Hospital executive pleads guilty to embezzlement charges

June 24, 2011

The former executive vice president of the Children’s Hospital of Phila­del­phia has pleaded guilty to charges stemming from a 12-year plot to embezzle $1.7 million from the hospital. Roosevelt Hairston Jr. was relieved of his duties in February after hospital auditors found irregularities.

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York County official claims hard times led her to steal

June 24, 2011
York County Assistant Chief Clerk Vickie Gladfelter has pleaded guilty to stealing more than $347,000 in county funds. She was sentenced to one to five years in state prison. Glad­­felter confessed to a seven-year scheme involving selling used county cell phones and pocketing postal refunds.
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Fair harassment investigation can justify firing supervisor

June 24, 2011
When investigating supervisor sexual har­assment claims, you must conduct a fair workplace investigation, not a criminal probe. As long as the investigation was fair and the conclusion was reasonable, courts won’t interfere.
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