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HIRING & FIRING

Employees who ask to be fired: A new trend to obtain a strategic advantage

By Lynne Curry At first, you think you’re imagining things. Your employee, “Kevin,” seems to want you to fire him. It started with Kevin not showing up for two critical team meetings in a row. When you sent him a text asking, “what happened” after the first, he responded, “It wasn’t on my radar.” You sent him an individual meeting request to ask him about this, but he was a “no show.” You planned to ask him to stay after the second team meeting, but he didn’t show up. In the meantime, your hear a complaint from another staffer: “He treats me with total disrespect. Maybe it’s that I’m a woman, or Hispanic, but I don’t plan to take it anymore.” This cascade of problems tells you need to act… . . . read more.

MANAGING STAFF

Quiet quitting: The new ‘just say no’ employee pushback

By Lynne Curry Gone are the days when employers could count on employees competing to go “above and beyond” to rise faster in their organizations. Employers now face “quiet quitting,” a trend that emerged in July 2022 from a viral TikTok video to become a phenomenon noted on Wikipedia and discussed in Forbes and the Wall Street Journal. Quiet quitting is more than employees setting boundaries or intentionally putting a hard stop to their work day or work week so they can create a work/life balance. Checked-out quiet quitters simply slack their way through their workweek by doing the bare minimum needed to keep their jobs, overloading their coworkers, frustrating their supervisors, and draining productivity from their employers. According ResumeBuilder.com’s August 2022 survey of 1000 U.S. employees, 21% of surveyed… . . . read more.

MANAGEMENT

Workplaces slow to get well from COVID-19 damage

By Lynne Curry You’ve heard that “long-haulers,” individuals with long COVID, suffer persistent COVID-19 symptoms that erode their quality of life. Anyone scanning the workplace soon realizes that some employers suffer from “long COVID”. A few refuse employers treatment, expecting to get well on their own. Three symptoms signal an employer suffers “long COVID”. Difficult to fill vacancies and continual turnover Job openings outnumber available workers by 5.46 million. So many potential employees have left the labor market to become self-employed, or gig and contract workers, that employers with vacancies continue to fight talent wars. Desperate to fill their positions, long hauler employers hire hastily, hoping the “best of the worst” will work out. Some new hires don’t last a day. Others leave without notice within their first four months,… . . . read more.

STAFFING

Is it a recession or not? The answer may surprise you

By Lynne Curry My in-box filled with questions after I posted a Recession Fears Loom blog. Readers asked how I made sense of the different views voiced by economists and politicians. As a medical office manager with responsibilities around staffing and profitability, you are probably watching to see which way the economy goes. Here’s the background, and my answer to “are we headed into a recession?”: Some say “yes.” Over 60 percent of the 750 CEOs surveyed by the business research firm Conference Board expect a recession in the next 12 to 18 months1. Another 15 percent of surveyed CEOs report their region is already in recession.1 The most recent gross domestic product report that tracks our overall economic health showed a second consecutive quarter of negative growth, the textbook… . . . read more.

LAYOFFS

How do we tell our employees we are laying off some of them?

By Lynne Curry As the economy takes a new twist, the talk in many work sectors is turning from staffing shortages to coming layoffs. If this is the case for your medical office, here are some things to think about: Consider alternatives Have you considered all the alternatives your company has to layoffs? Could you reduce hours or salaries for a larger number of employees? If you transition from a five-day workweek to a four-day workweek, you can cut payroll by 20 percent. If you offer employees five weeks of vacation annually, of which two are paid, many of your employees may see this as a perk and that can thin your ranks. Have you asked your employees for cost-cutting ideas? Or, it is too late, and layoffs are your… . . . read more.

QUIZ

Do you make your employees want to stay?

By Lynne Curry Your employees are leaving, because they want better opportunities. What are you giving them? If it’s not better opportunities, you’ll lose them. Here’s what you need to consider: Do you pay your employees what they’re worth? If you can’t afford competitive compensation, do you compensate by giving employees flexibility and autonomy, allowing them to feel they’re in charge of leveraging their time and productivity, and can work harder or longer one day and take a bit of a break the next day? Do you give your employees the chance to learn new things and develop professionally? Do you respect and value your employees, and do you clearly demonstrate that you value them? As a manager/supervisor, do you step to the plate? If you want the best employees,… . . . read more.

LEADERSHIP

5 ways to help your team members overcome burnout

The last couple of years have been rough on everyone in the healthcare field, including medical offices. Many suffered burnout early in the pandemic; others held it all together until now when they are  quietly falling apart. Chances are someone on your team has had enough of the pressures from work, short staff and short resources, home responsibilities, family, finances, the public health emergency and other turmoil in society. As a manager, you want to help. Here are four ideas to get you started: Help organize and prioritize work into manageable and clear expectations. These changes can help rebuild energy over time and aid in recovery. Develop a practical strategy to support an employee who may be experiencing burnout. As part of any plan, ask the employee how best to recognize… . . . read more.

RISK MANAGEMENT

How to handle office romance in 2022

By Lynne Curry Three potential hot messes. In company Z, a senior manager considered his workplace a dating pool in which he fished. When he put the moves on a new female employee, the workplace grapevine ignited. In company Y, the head of marketing had serial crushes on one after another of the male management trainees. Because she was attractive and personable, several of them developed crushes in return. One put the moves on her when they worked all weekend on a project. In company X, the Chief Operating Office and Chief Financial Officer had a not-so-secret affair. Although he hated to, the Chief Executive Officer called them into his office and said, “One of you needs to resign. Unless this happens, we’ll have no defense if we fire someone… . . . read more.

TOOL

Love contracts: Help for hot messes

They arrive at work separately. They never touch each other in your presence. Then, as you chair a meeting, you see his gray eyes seek hers out across the conference table. She returns his gaze; her eyes linger. Suddenly you know. The senior manager, despite all the sexual harassment seminars he’s attended, appears romantically intertwined with an accounting clerk. If you’re in charge, how do you handle this hot mess?  The reality Some managers and supervisors would never have an affair with an employee they oversee or an employee in their company. Others consider the workplace a dating pond in which they fish. Still others fall into a relationship that makes them disregard risks. According to a recent survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, one in three U.S…. . . . read more.

TELEWORK

Remote staff keeping up with on-site staff, survey shows

When it comes to productivity, workers share more similarities than differences, new research from talent solutions and business consulting firm Robert Half shows. A survey of more than 500 professionals reveals five productivity trends that have taken shape since the shift to remote work. Productivity peaks early in the week. Employees get the most done on Monday and Tuesday, whether at home or in the office. Results are consistent with a similar survey conducted in 2019, before the rise of remote and hybrid work. Professionals have defined power hours. Most workers hit their stride in the late morning (9 a.m. to noon) and early afternoon (1 to 4 p.m.), regardless of where they sit. Very few tackle their to-dos during lunch or evening hours. Meetings are getting in the way. When asked to share what… . . . read more.


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