Thursday, April 18, 2019

How to fire an employee

The Wall Street Journal recently asked this simple question:

What's the Best Way to Fire Someone?

I have some thoughts.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Bathroom conversations aren't private conversations

Michael Woods, a mortgage banker at Quicken Loans, was having a bad day at work. A customer Woods had helped four years ago had been trying to get in touch with a Client Specialist; the company routed the call to Woods because of their prior relationship. He aired his grievance to a co-worker, Austin Laff, while they were in the bathroom together. "The client should get in touch with a fucking Client Care Specialist and quit wasting my fucking time."

Jorge Mendez, a supervisor, overheard this conversation from a stall. He responded with an all-employee email reminding everyone of proper conduct in public areas. "Never, EVER, should we be swearing in the bathroom especially about clients."

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

That's how the ball bounces: 6th Circuit says that the ADA does not require a new supervisor as a reasonable accommodation

Cindy Tinsley was so stressed.

How stressed was she?

She was so stressed that even something as simple as her co-workers at Caterpillar Financial Services bouncing stress balls off the ground would trigger her post-traumatic stress disorder.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Maybe you should rethink telling your employee you're firing him becaus of his heart problems

Jonathan Baum worked as a scheduler for Metro Restoration Services. In late 2014, he began have cardiac problems. Over the course of the next several months, he went to the ER fearing a heart attack, had a heart catheter implanted, had an echocardiogram, and wore a heart monitor. He occasionally also missed work for medical tests and treatments, and sometimes worked remotely. His boss, and the owner of Metro, Patrick Cahill, was aware of all of Baum's medical issues.

Following a work day on which Baum had worked remotely from his home. Cahill fired him. The expressly stated reason: "health issues and doctors' appointments."


Friday, April 12, 2019

WIRTW #548 (the “working for the weekend” edition)

I thought I'd update everyone on the summer goings-on of Northeast Ohio's favorite age-15-and-under cover band, Fake ID.

They have a busy summer. They will kick it off with a return engagement at Ohio Bike Week. After stealing the festival last year (really, go to the Ohio Bike Week Facebook page and read the reviews), they've been invited back to tear it up again.

Loverboy … and Fake ID. My 10-year-old self watching MTV in my grandparents' basement is totally freaking out.

Then, the band has a residency booked at Westlake's Crocker Park. They'll be playing on June 15, July 6, August 9, and August 20 (all from 5:30 – 7, on the square in front of the movie theater).

Pretty cool stuff for my 12-year-old daughter.

Here's what I read this week:

Thursday, April 11, 2019

The three things you need to know from the EEOC's 2018 charge data

Yesterday, the EEOC released its charge statistics for 2018. There are three big things you need to know.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

When workplace training goes very, very wrong

A few months ago I participated in active-shooter training. I presented harassment training for a local manufacturer, and, at its conclusion, the company played a 10-minute video explaining to its employees what to do in an active-shooter situation. Generally I'm not a fan of training videos. They tend to be boring, poorly acted, and ineffective. This one, however, was quite effective. It was not only chilling to watch, but, a few months out, I still recall the ABCs of what to do during an active shooter (Avoid, Barricade, Confront).

An Indiana school district, however, had a different idea of how to train its employees to prepare for an active shooter.

This employer had its employees shot in the back, execution style, with plastic pellets.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

To help end sexual harassment, men MUST be better in reporting it when they witness it

"Dad, something bad happened at recess today!"

It's a refrain I sometimes hear at the dinner table.

"Donovan, what happened?"

"Joe pushed Billy off the swing, and Billy cut his knee when he fell."

"Did anyone let a teacher know what happened?"


"Why not?"

"I didn't because I didn't want to be a tattletale."

I've had this conversation with both of my kids — the difference between being a tattletale and reporting an unsafe situation.

Monday, April 8, 2019

The 10th nominee for the “worst employer of 2019” is … the exercising employer

Is it too early to declare a winner for 2019's contest?

According to the complaint Jason Fields fired against the Hampton Inn at which he worked, and its manager, Sharon Lindon, he had to endure some pretty odd stuff during his employment.

As he tells his story, Lindon decided to help Field's after she learned of his impending divorce. How? By offering to exorcise him.

Friday, April 5, 2019

WIRTW #547 (the “new music Friday” edition)

Jenny Lewis just released the first great album of 2019.  

On The Line has witty and funny, yet touching and sad, lyrics, and beautiful melodies that will stick in your head. It's an album that commands your attention. I'll be shocked if it's not at the top of the "Best Of" lists at year's end. You should listen, now and often.

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