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  • How to stop nitpicking and lead your team to better performance

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    Crystal Spraggins, SPHR

    NIT-PICK (v.) to be excessively concerned with or critical of inconsequential details (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/nitpick)

    The problem with the nitpicking manager is that he often lacks self-insight. In other words, the nitpicking manager doesn’t view his behavior as unhelpful. And that makes perfect sense, because if this manager viewed his behavior as unhelpful, one can only imagine that he wouldn’t be acting this way, right?

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  • 5 truths about pay your employees don’t want you to know

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    Crystal Spraggins, SPHR 

    Quick—what’s the one topic many job seekers are advised to avoid during the interview process?

    You guessed it. Money. When job seekers are focused on money during the interview stage, it shows a lack of real interest and commitment to the work—or so the thinking goes.

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  • Is it time to ban bossy?

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    Evan Rodd, PayScale

    Are women called Bossy more often than men? If so, what impact does that have on the overall picture of gender equality in leadership positions? The gender wage gap and women’s roles in leadership are popular, and sadly sometimes polarizing topics of conversation. Recently there has been a lot of buzz regarding Sheryl Sandberg’s Ban Bossy campaign, which is “a public service campaign to encourage leadership and achievement in girls.”

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  • Leadership 101: Why teaching is so much better than telling

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    Crystal Spraggins, SPHR

    It’s been my experience that most adults do not like being told what to do. But when it comes to work, what does this mean exactly?

    Most everyone has a boss, and generally, most everyone is required to take direction from said boss. Refusing to take direction from a boss is a big no-no. It’s called insubordination, and most places will fire you for it.

    So, how do good managers respect their employees’ natural inclination to not want to be told what to do while at the same time fulfilling their managerial duties? Simple. They cause others to willingly follow by providing sound leadership. And some of the best leaders I’ve ever known were natural teachers.

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  • Are Your Starting Rates Supporting Employee Performance?

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    In the grand scheme of things, how well you compensate employees from the start can influence both the short and long-term performance of your work teams. When employees know that they work for an employer that values their contributions with a transparent salary policy that reflects this, a beautiful thing happens. Work becomes more rewarding in a tangible way. Salary isn’t a sore point, but rather a demonstration of support for the efforts of employees at all levels.

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  • The top five ways to motivate your employees

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Even at the most successful companies, employees sometimes need a boost of motivation to keep them operating at their peak. It’s a bit like a tune up for your workforce, which is often just what’s needed when your employees have been putting in long hours, producing great work or even under performing. The truth is, whether your people are performing excellently or lacking, motivation can take them to the next level.

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  • Motivating employees during layoffs

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Going through mass layoffs is extremely difficult for any organization. While it’s certainly a hardship for those who lose their jobs, the employees who are left to fill the gaps also face unique struggles. They are likely experiencing a range of emotions, from fear to gratefulness, to frustration and confusion. These employees who made it through the layoffs are not only feeling uncertain about their jobs but also feeling the stress of picking up the slack when there has been a major cut in staffing. The difficulty in helping your employees manage all these feelings is that there is an incredible need for employees to be motivated as well during this time so that both the quality and quantity of worked performed isn’t affected. 

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  • 10 ways to boost employee incentive programs

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    When is the last time you took the time to thank your employees for a job well done? Several workplace studies have shown a connection between appreciation of employees and the results of company objectives. Leaders who put emphasis on demonstrating appreciation to employees on a regular basis produce a higher level of employee engagement, which boosts productivity like gangbusters. Having an employee incentive program in place is one piece of the bigger puzzle.

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  • Fair and square! 5 ways to boost your bonus program

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    How well is your company doing at fairly handling the employee bonus and incentive program? To help you figure out that answer, first ask yourself this question: Do you have a way of tracking the perks you hand out to employees so that you know you are doing this well? If your company chooses to use bonuses as part of a compensation program, but you are not effectively managing this with data, you could be missing the mark.  

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  • 3 steps to handling a request for a raise

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Pay raises are an inevitable aspect of managing employees but that doesn’t make handling them any less complicated. Whether it’s determining which employees to give raises to or considering how much of a raise is ideal, the process typically makes the top of the list of dreaded tasks for HR professionals and managers. To make matters even more difficult, employees don’t always wait until their performance review to request a raise. Even though it may not be the best time for you, when employees request a raise you are faced with decisions that you may not have considered before that moment.

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  • Earned time off incentives - are they effective?

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    One of the many ways that employers incentivize the workplace is by offering earned time off for hours worked. This can be an effective way to motivate and reward employees at the same time as creating access to greater work life balance. For most, it’s a win-win situation. Employers have access to a reliable workforce, while employees have the chance to earn much needed time off. It seems like a good compromise to the growing issue of faltering attendance and performance in many organizations.

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  • Employee stack ranking - motivation or manipulation?

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    One of the most important responsibilities of an HR manager is to find the right way to motivate employees. On the surface this can seem like a simple task, one that can be checked off your list with a few compliments, maybe a bonus or even a promotion. But when you get in the trenches with these employees you wish to motivate, you’ll see that the day-to-day motivators for employees vary greatly from person to person, making it tricky to determine what type of system will best fit the employees who are a part of it and the organization as a whole.

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  • Top 5 compensation lessons from 2013

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    Mykkah Herner, M.A., CCP, PayScale

    Last year was a year of ups, downs, and shutdowns. The Affordable Care Act is still looming over us, the impact unclear. Some but not all companies are pulling free of the recession. Employees have continued moving around more and more since the official end of the recession. Yet amidst the turmoil, there are some key lessons. Essentially, in an uncertain time, compensation plans and strategies need to be flexible. In this article I’ll talk about the top 5 ways we can infuse flexibility into our programs.

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  • 3 Performance review options for startups

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Managing a startup company is a tough job whether you are just breaking ground or growing quickly. There’s so much on-the-job training and such a learning curve, not to mention that you never know what each day will bring. Wearing many hats, you have to quickly become an expert and grow professionally in order to keep up. Many startups have the advantage of having leaders who have years of professional experience so not every problem that comes up is foreign but at the same time, you also have the freedom to leave everything you know behind and establish new solutions and traditions. That’s a major reason why the topic of performance reviews in startups elicits such a varied response.

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  • The performance review: why consistency matters

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Conducting performance reviews is a tricky part of any manager’s job. They tend to hold quite a bit of weight when it comes to judging an employee’s contribution to the organization but are also very subjective, sometimes leaving employees with unfair assessments or unclear expectations. To make things worse, managers tend to let their own biases affect performance reviews so employees may not trust the performance review at all. While these issues are all unfortunate aspects of performance reviews, they happen every day in both large and small businesses.

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  • Do’s and don’ts for managing the insubordinate employee

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    Crystal Spraggins, SPHR

    Insubordinate employees are a poison in the workplace.

    That was bold, and I’m sorry, but it’s true.

    Employees with putrid attitudes who won’t and don’t follow instructions are a real drag on workplace productivity, because even if they’re kind of, sort of doing their jobs, the effort required to manage them relative to their output is a sorry bargain.

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  • Is your paternalistic culture killing your business?

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    Crystal Spraggins, SPHR

    A company’s culture, or personality, is a very big deal. Just as an individual’s personality can be a help or a hindrance to meeting certain personal goals, a company’s “personality” can be a help or a hindrance to meeting certain organizational goals.

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  • Making the performance review relevant to employees

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Performance reviews are typically a source of dread and stress for employees. They tend to be very critical, one sided and vague, leaving very little of value for employees to take away from the evaluation. However, they are a necessary part of growth and development, both for your company and the employee as an individual. Performance reviews establish expectations, review job performance and provide direction, all of which contribute to the success of your company. However, there is another side to performance reviews that often gets overlooked: what the performance review does for the employee.

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  • Holiday parties vs. employee bonuses - what do employees most look forward to?

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    Get out your party hats – it’s the annual holiday season! This time of year signals a time when employees eagerly look forward to what the company has in store for them. Like little kids in a candy shop, they wonder if they will they get another turkey from the boss again this year, or does he have something else up his sleeve – like a bonus check?

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  • 7 tips for hiring and retention of top performing employees

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    It’s a fact. Each year businesses face too late what happens when employee morale drops and the best begin to leave for greener pastures. This most often occurs when the leadership team forgets that there is a fine line between recruiting and retaining high performance candidates. It’s a sad state of affairs that is completely preventable, with the right efforts and planning.

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