Attorneys have named these mistakes as the most common and the most costly among managerial mistakes, and if you are in HR you should take action now!
To avoid complications, HR should meet with every manager, supervisor, and front-line employee within the company to ensure compliance and understanding in these five areas:
1. Poor documentation- It is a rule of thumb that documents should never be subjective. All documentation should be written professionally, objectively, and with the ability to be presented to a jury as is.
2. Inconsistency with policies- It is often easier to avoid tough conversations by mindlessly escalating employee performance rates, however this will only make things more difficult in the long run. Inflated employee performance rates make it hard to justify disciplinary decisions in court.
3. Oblivion to the law- There is a frightening trend in employment cases where employers admit to not knowing the laws. From FMLA to ADA, managers honestly acknowledge their ignorance. Training on critical employment laws such as these should not be overlooked.
4. Disregarding complaints- All complaints about mistreatment and/or harassment must be taken seriously. No matter how often a given employee complains, every case must follow protocol and be investigated to avoid a bigger problem later on.
5. Antagonism- Rude managers are the ones with the most reports, legal mishaps, and court cases. Employees tend to take it personally when a manager treats them obscenely, and they often attribute this treatment to traits (i.e. age, race, gender...). This leads to discrimination lawsuits that could have been avoided by simply being more cordial.
Despite the increasing frequency of these cases as noted by attorneys, these issues can easily be avoided with proper training and awareness.
For more help understanding these issues or for assistance with legal compliance, click here.