Employee Issues

Post image for Your ‘Contractor’ Might Be an Employee

The amount of control you have over your workers affects their legal definition. Entrepreneurs continually face an age-old conundrum: You can’t grow your company without hiring more people. But you can’t hire anyone until the company has grown enough to afford employees. That’s why independent contractors are often an attractive option. They save business owners […]


Post image for Dress (Code) for Success

If I could find a word to sum up the best way to deal with employees, I think the word would be consistency. It’s a lack of consistency that often gets employers in trouble with discrimination laws, even if they didn’t intend to discriminate. Picture this: Aybeesee Company hires its first employee (Jim, a 22-year-old […]

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Post image for Can You Use Google to Pre-Screen Employees?

With more and more people (especially Gen Yers and Millenials) posting their personal information on the internet, it seems a handy place for employers to go to scoop up background information on prospective hires. After all, by publishing this information on their blogs, Facebook pages and MySpace profiles, the potential employees can hardly claim that […]


Post image for Should You Let Your Employees Blog?

I just returned from Miami Beach, where I spoke on the subject of “Social Media for Corporate Executives” with fellow (sister?) Entrepreneur blogger Lena West. [Check out her Tech Forward blog if you haven’t already.] Blogging is fun, blogging is new, blogging is strategic, and blogging raises hairs on the backs of the necks of […]


Post image for Avoiding Employees from Hell

You’ve either had them or have worked with them: the employees from hell. They tend to do very little productive work and spend their time making a nuisance of themselves. And they know just enough about the law to “play the game.” They have you boxed into a corner so that you can’t fire them […]


Post image for Employment Eligibility Form

As you may have heard, there’s a lot of hand-wringing going on in Congress and the courts about how to deal with illegal immigration. Your responsibility, as an employer, is to make sure that you get some form of verification from your employees that they are legally allowed to work in the United States. (Note, […]


Post image for Business Crackdown on Immigration Halted . . . For Now

As reported in the San Francisco Sentinel, the U.S. government will suspend its legal defense of a new rule issued in August to penalize employers who hire illegal immigrants, according to government papers filed late Friday in federal court. Court papers asked the judge to delay the case until March 24 or until a new […]


Post image for Sex, Food & Liability: A Restaurant Business Problem

Food and sex have always had a close relationship. Think of the cinematic ditties No Reservations, Chocolat and Tampopo. Food can become a sensual experience that leads to … dancing (as the old joke goes). But it’s no joke when you find yourself the recipient of a sexual harassment suit. As Glenn Haussmann of Hotel […]


Post image for Conducting Background Checks

Whatever unpleasant associations background checks may bring up, they can form an important facet of your due diligence for your small business. It’€™s not just about criminal matters, although that’s a part of it. For example, if you intend to hire an employee to handle sensitive financial matters, you’d want to know whether they have a previous […]


Post image for An Independent Contractor By Any Other Name . . . .

In light of our just-celebrated Labor Day, I thought I’€™d share a little something about the dangerous games that small business owners play when, in essence, they hire employees and pay them as independent contractors. From Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, 1594: What’s in a name? that which we call a rose By any other name […]