Monthly Archives: November 2014

Don’t Let Nasty Weather Blow Your Office Off Course

It’s that time of year when we focus on preparing year-end reports; looking at where we’ve been, where we’re at and where we’re going. And, the arrival this week of the Polar Vortex across most of the country reminds us that winter has arrived.

Bad weather can greatly impact a small business. Just one day closed may reflect negatively on the bottom line. Not only during the winter months, but all year long, small business can be affected by turns in the weather, or by natural disasters, maybe flooding, severe wind and rain storms, even earthquakes. Are you prepared?

bad weather and your businessAccording to a survey of small business owners by Travelers Insurance, nearly 44 percent of all U.S. small businesses do not have a written business continuity plan, or any other documentation that outlines what actions should be taken in the event of serious weather emergencies. It’s easy to see the importance of this kind of planning, not only for your business, but also for your employees. Ensuring their health, safety and peace of mind is both critical and considerate.

If you don’t have an inclement weather policy for your office, here are a few guidelines for developing one:

  • Clearly spell out who is responsible for making and announcing any closures, and how employees will be able to find out whether that decision has been made.
  • Outline how the determination will be made as to whether or not the office will close. Will you follow the county government closings?
  • Specify whether employees should use a vacation or personal day if they choose to be absent due to bad weather.
  • Know how you will manage employee absences due to school or daycare closings.
  • Establish guidelines and provisions if employees are able to work from home.
  • Be sure you are knowledgeable about your current insurance coverage. See if it includes coverage for accidents on company property caused by bad weather conditions. If your company decides to stay open during bad weather and an employee has a personal accident, he or she may be able to sue if that person can prove the employer was negligent in remaining open.

These are just a few thoughts. We welcome specific suggestions you want to add that we can pass along to other readers. Now is the time to review your policies and procedures, and to prepare for inclement conditions.

Don’t let nasty weather blow you off course. There’s no time like the present to take action.

 

 

The Ugly Truth – Promises Made, But Not Delivered

A change in company culture, or the feeling of not being valued or respected are just a couple of the reasons key employees leave their jobs. Fact: Employees leave not because they want to work closer to home, or even to earn a higher salary. Promises made by companies, by managers or by supervisory staff, but then not delivered signify another reason for dissatisfaction and discouragement. We’ve been hearing this particular comment a lot lately. Recently, we received communication from a 15+ year career dental assistant via email. Her comment: “I feel the position I’m in and company I work for is not up to par. This is not the job for me. I have been with this office for two and a half years now and was promised things that just have not come through.” Do you hear her frustration? She feels let down, disappointed and frustrated.

Speaking with her on the phone after we received her note, she shared how sad she was to be leaving her employer. After all, she said, she gets along with all her co-workers and loves her work. She accepted the job without knowing the company policies and procedures, or without inquiring into its culture. Had she been able to gain insight earlier, she would have learned this was the trend here.… promises made, but never delivered.

Blog Ugly Truth 2  Promises Made but not Delivered

Research and communication are critical to any job search. You must be as well-informed as possible before accepting a position. Know your WHY. Why are you interested in a particular practice or company? What’s important to you in a job? Go “old school.” Take pen to paper and make a list. Be a good researcher and listener from the start. The interview is a time to be on a fact finding mission. Just as an employer performs a background check, you should check out the employer, as well. Network with your peers, research online, visit the company website and, if given the opportunity, talk with current employees. Many offices have top candidates go to lunch with office staff, as the dental office team members are key influencers.

When considering a job offer, we recommend you get the position in writing, to include job description, pay and benefits, and request a copy of the office’s policies and procedures to review. You know what’s important to you, what kind of company you want to work for. If there is resistance when you ask for this information, it should tell you something. Think twice… and think a third time. This may not be the job for you.

Remember, YOU have the power to make a choice. Do your best to not get in a situation of promises made, but not delivered.