Using Flexible Schedules: Better Work, Healthier Employees

Using Flexible Schedules: Better Work, Healthier Employees

Personal crises impacting employees can encompass more than individuals becoming sick or injured. Stressful and often unexpected responsibilities and worries include having to care for an elderly parent, ill child or newborn or supporting a newly unemployed or underemployed spouse. The result for the worker may be financial strain as well as a detrimental impact on mental and physical health (in some cases even triggering alcohol and drug abuse). For the employer, the employee’s problems may translate into absenteeism and reduced productivity. Increasingly, however, HR leaders and managers are realizing that creating flexible work schedules can help employees in times of crisis – and it can also be a strategy that benefits both the workforce and the company, in general. Academic researchers, business and labor leaders, and government and military officials gathered in Washington, DC, to discuss this topic at a Focus on Workplace Flexibility conference sponsored by the nonprofit …

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4 Topics Your Employee Handbook Should Cover – But May Not

4 Topics Your Employee Handbook Should Cover But May Not

An employee handbook is a great way to communicate a variety of information about your company to employees. Most employee handbooks contain nondiscrimination policies, terms of employment, alcohol and drug policies, and rules about using technology and social media. There are other topics your employee handbook should include, however. Here are 4 types of information your employee handbook should cover, but might not. 1.  Media Relations Chances are that your company will draw media attention at some point. Whether it’s for a snazzy new product or a serious scandal, you need to have the right people lined up to do the talking to reporters and bloggers. Include information in your employee handbook about whom the company has designated to speak to the media on its behalf – and make sure every employee knows to transfer calls from the media to the appropriate contacts. Avoid blanket prohibitions about speaking to the media …

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Are Your Employees Clueless About Company Business Goals?

Are Your Employees Clueless About Company Business Goals?

When employees aren’t clear about the strategic business goals of the organization they work for — or when they don’t even know what those goals are — a company’s path to business success can be seriously hampered. Unfortunately, according to a recent survey, too many employees are, in fact, downright clueless about their firm’s objectives. The new survey was developed by Robert Half Management Resources (an international provider of senior-level finance, accounting and business systems professionals on a project and interim basis) and involved interviews and data collection conducted by an independent research firm. More than 2,100 chief financial officers (CFOs), representing a stratified random sample of companies in more than 20 of the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S., were asked this pivotal question: “In your opinion, how aware are your employees of the company’s strategic business goals?” Survey Results Over 1/3 of these executives (34%) stated their workers …

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Spring Clean Your Medicine Cabinet

Spring Clean Your Medicine Cabinet

Has it been a while since you looked through all the pills and other items stored in your medicine cabinet? If the answer is “yes,” include getting rid of prescription and over the counter (OTC) medications that have expired or gone unused for months to years as part of your spring cleaning. There are numerous reasons why this is a healthy decision. Sure, it can be tempting to leave a keep a half bottle of leftover pain relievers or some antibiotics around “just in case,” but you could be putting yourself or family members at risk for accidental ingestion, misuse, or overdose. And while it’s true that some pills keep their potency for years, other drugs lose their effectiveness and still others can change composition over time and become dangerous. One example is the antibiotic tetracycline which can become toxic after its expiration date, resulting in kidney problems if ingested. …

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How Much Do You Really Know About Sleep?

How Much Do You Really Know About Sleep?

We don’t usually think much about sleep until we don’t get enough. But a lack of sleep not only makes us tired, it can have serious impacts on our health and even how well we do our work. Unfortunately, a lack of sufficient sleep is so common in the U.S. that it is now recognized as a public health problem by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to the CDC, people who don’t get enough sleep have reduced on-the-job productivity and more car and industrial accidents, too. If that wasn’t alarming enough, research shows that sleeping too little raises the risk of chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and depression. How Much Sleep do You Need? The National Sleep Foundation convened an expert panel of doctors and scientists to recommend how much sleep is best for most people, based on age. Loyola University Chicago …

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