Protect Your Mission ~ Lancaster PA In HIS Name HR LLC

Protect Your Mission ~ Lancaster PA


HR practices that can best help your “Kingdom-Minded” organization and business protect its mission in todays’ hostile world.

Teague Learning Commons
Thursday November 14, 2019
8AM-Noon

Presenter Mark Griffin has seen it all in his more than 25 years of Human Resources experience gained by working with a wide range of organizations, from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies to Christian Colleges, Ministries and Churches.

Presenter Randall Wenger Esq. has a myriad of experiences from all his years of working on religious liberty cases in Pennsylvania including the Conestoga Wood Specialties case that resulted in a landmark victory in the US Supreme Court for religious liberty and the sanctity of life. Randy understands the pressures and dangers that are facing those who want to run their businesses and organizations in line with their Christian values.

Let Mark and Randy help you by sharing their experiences in helping a variety of organizations manage their beliefs in the reality of today’s workplace.

Leading an organization with Christ-centered values makes organizational sense.

Mark will share why he believes Christ-centered organizations experience:

  • Lower absenteeism
  • Higher quality products
  • Less employee morale issues
  • Safer work environments
  • Better perceptions by customers and vendors

Mark will also share how he helps organizations develop HR practices that reflect their core values and still build a high performance organization.

Topics To Be Covered

  • Legislative and policy dangers
  • Current state of religious liberty in court
  • Creating a high performance culture through practical HR competency development
  • Where most organizations go wrong engaging employees
  • Setting expectations
  • HR tools for creating success
  • Employee policy manuals
  • Codes of Conduct
  • Employee relations and communications
  • Performance management
  • Counseling and discipline procedures
  • Terminations
  • An overview of labor laws

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Teague Learning Commons (Map)

About The Pennsylvania Family Institute

The Mission of the Pennsylvania Family Institute is to strengthen families by restoring to public life the traditional, foundational principles and values essential for the well-being of society. It is  the only full-time, professionally staffed non-profit organization representing family values—your values—in the state capitol. It encourages responsible citizenship and involvement in civic affairs to promote respect for life, family, marriage and religious liberty.

About The Presenters

Randall L. Wenger, Esq. – COO & Chief Counsel
Randall Wenger is Chief Counsel of the Independence Law Center in Harrisburg, a pro-bono law center affiliated with the Pennsylvania Family Institute and dedicated to maintaining those liberties that have made America great and free. He has litigated in federal courts all around the county, and his cases have included the free exercise of religion, freedom of speech, bodily privacy, and pro-life issues. In addition to his role with the Independence Law Center, he is COO of the Pennsylvania Family Institute.

Randall has an economics degree from the University of Chicago and earned his J.D. at the University of Pennsylvania. He lives in Lancaster County, and he and his wife Tina have seven children.

Mark A. Griffin, MBA – President and Founder In HIS Name HR LLC
Mark is a human resources professional with 25-plus years of experience in both public (Quaker Oats Company, Kodak Inc., Merck Inc.) and private companies (Woolrich, Conestoga Wood Specialties, Valco Companies Inc.), Mark is passionate about building high-performance workplaces by utilizing best practices while leading organizations with strong values.

Speaker, accomplished HR consultant, and the author of How to Build “Kingdom-Minded” Organizations and College to Career: The Student Guide to Career and Life Navigation, Mark A. Griffin encourages leaders to build values-led organizations during these increasingly complex times.

christian ethics in the workplace

Why You Need Faith In The Workplace


Today’s churches sit empty. More than any other time in history, your employees spend increased amounts of time commuting to and from work, working in their workplaces, and working evenings and weekends, disengaged from their families and communities. These increased hours have resulted in employees spending more waking hours at work than they spend at home with their families, with friends or volunteering in their communities. Because of this, we all have an opportunity and a mission: a mission to reach those who need saving. This is the world’s untapped  harvest, a field of opportunity. And, as God proclaims, we need more workers into his fields.

Matthew  9: 35-38 (NIV) The Workers Are Few 35 Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. 36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. 38 Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”

According to Pew’s 2014 Religious Landscape Survey, those who say they go to church or another house of worship at least once a week fell from 39 percent in 2007 to 35 percent in 2014. This number is probably misleading because many people may have embellished their attendance a bit out of a sense of guilt or obligation! However, assuming it is accurate that would leave a whopping 65% of U.S. residents not attending any religious services each week. This is a concern, because it clearly proves that, statistically speaking, your employees are probably not spiritually grounded.

This is where Christian business owners and executives
must step in to help God fill the void.

As a human resources professional with 25 years of experience in both public and private companies, I can tell you from firsthand experience that the lack of faith in our workplace affects every aspect of the workplace. Employees’ lack of time to focus on their own spiritual needs will undoubtedly affect productivity, quality and safety. Harder to measure but just as important, it affects their own and their coworkers’ morale. Employees lacking in faith will bring far more problems to the workplace than those who are seeking God or are Christ followers.

You can try to run your business without God.
Or you can include Him in your plans.
I urge you to include Him.
God is the ultimate business partner!

Therefore, those of us that are hesitant to embrace Christianity in the workplace must really look at it not only from a spiritual perspective, but from a business perspective as well.  Far from being self-serving, this shows the attitude of a responsible business owner, attempting to prosper their business for the financial security and future of their employees and employees’ families.

If you are a business owner, sometimes you might feel like your the only christian in the workplace. Often times these feelings are not necessarily accurate. They are real feelings, but we find many organizations have faithful Christians working along each other, they just are not aware of it because of the fear of talking about faith at work. We are not in the business of creating “religious companies”, on the contrary we are in the business of helping to create a “Kingdom Minded” company. There is a big difference.

 Makes Financial Sense

Leading a company with Christ-centered values just makes good business sense.  I believe that Christ-centered organizations can experience:

  • Lower absenteeism
  • Higher quality products
  • Fewer employee morale issues
  • Safer work environments
  • Better perceptions by customers and vendors

 What I have found to work

You must have a Vision, Mission, and Core Values. Many business professionals stop there. I urge all of you to go further. Integrate your core values into your Human Resources practices. This will:

  • Memorialize your standards
  • Provide guiding principles in all you do
  • Make your values easily understood by  employees
  • Drive a values-based culture with your customers

Don’t just hang your Vision, Mission, and Core Values on the wall! Integrate, Integrate and then Integrate some more. Get your values into your culture and make it an intrinsic part of the way you work.

I believe that employees who work for an outwardly faith-based Christian organization are committed at a different level than those in non-faith-based organizations. Employees are more likely to go the extra mile, to trust their leadership, to deliver on their promises and be led by those who demonstrate Christ-like servant leadership, because they can!

Feel free to reach out to me and ask for my assistance in helping you develop and prosper a “Kingdom Minded” company. Contact Us

Have you worked for a company that has been outward in their faith?  What were some of the obstacles the leadership faced?  What were some of the benefits that the company enjoyed because of their desire to lead with principles?  What’s your opinion? we would like to know.

Post your comments below-

Labor Issues IHN HR

3 Labor Law Issues that Can Destroy Your Organization


Are you complying with all the proper state and federal labor laws? 

If not, it could cost you everything.

 In large corporations, an entire human resources (HR) department navigates the complex minefield of federal and state labor laws. Most small organizations think of HR as an afterthought, or HR responsibilities like hiring, benefits, compliance, and payroll falls to a few people who aren’t properly trained. This can be a pricey mistake. Laws concerning overtime, unlawful termination, and equal rights are just a few areas that trip up organizations, big and small, all the time.

Labor laws fill volumes and are quite complex. Plus, labor laws vary from state to state! Even Walmart ran into trouble recently and incurred $4.83 million dollars in back wages, penalties, and fines for violating The Fair Labor Standards Act. The mistake? Managers were misclassified and not appropriately compensated for overtime work. Unlawful termination is another problem that has cost organizations like UPS, Carmike Cinemas, and Dial Corporation dearly. Yes, it’s tricky. Do you know the laws?

It gets worse—the government is ramping up efforts to check up on organizations and crack down. The Obama administration has allotted $25 million for the sole purpose of investigating those misclassified as “independent contractors,” hoping to reclaim lost tax revenue and pad the IRS’s coffers. Be smart. Remember that stiff penalties and lawyer fees can decimate your organization. Are your workers properly classified?

Stay legal and remember these 3 key points:

 Child labor, non-resident labor, and equal rights legislation are the three areas where small organizations most often fail to comply.

• Both state and federal labor information is free and available online.

• Outsourcing with an HR professional firm can save your organization a lot of time and money.

Most organizations with fewer than 100 people benefit from outsourcing labor law compliance and other human resource tasks to HR professionals. The alternative is risky: employees are often uninformed about and under-trained in labor law compliance. Look out! Federal fines could be in store for you. In addition, HR often falls outside an employee’s main job focus, so getting it wrong or spending valuable time away from primary tasks can cripple productivity in a small organization. Get the right person trained or on your team to comply with labor laws.

Regrettably, staying legal has never been more difficult or important.

Make sure to get the help you need right away.

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 Mark Griffin is founder and Chief Consultant at In His Name HR LLC. He has over 25 years of HR experience. Learn more about Mark’s journey in HR by watching this short video. In addition you can also follow him on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

Join us in Garden Grove, California November 6 – 8, 2019


Sexual Harassment and Your Responsibilities Under the Law

You can’t open a news website without seeing another #MeToo circumstance being reported. As a result, many organizations have a “zero tolerance” policy for sexual harassment in the workplace, but what does that really mean to you, as a leader? Or you, as an employee? What is sexual harassment? In this interactive presentation, you’ll learn:

  • What sexual harassment is—including the verbal, visual, and physical conduct that could be considered or perceived as harassment
  • What your rights and obligations are under the law
  • What you can do as an employee to support a harassment-free work environment
  • What you should do as a leader to help provide a harassment-free workplace
  • What to do if you feel you may have been the subject of sexual harassment
  • Steps your organization can take to better your work environment

Sexual harassment is unacceptable in any workplace. It simply should never be tolerated. Come learn how you can help free your workplace of harassment and make it one where all employees will grow and prosper.

For more information about the TRACS conference click here.

About The Speaker

Mark is an accomplished HR expert with a fresh perspective. He believes in challenging people to think differently when presented with obstacles in any situation. His passions are inspiring, motivating, and helping others. Peers describe Mark as creative, proactive, determined, and eager to learn. Just a few of Mark’s professional skills include organizing, presenting, and problem solving.

Mr. Griffin received his Bachelor of Science degree in Human Resources Administration from Saint Leo University. He earned his MBA from Bloomsburg University while interning for Congressmen Kanjorski as a military liaison during the first Gulf War. Mark has completed several executive education programs at the University of Michigan.

Prior to leading In HIS Name HR, Mark worked for Quaker Oats Company, Kodak Inc., and Merck Inc., and private companies Woolrich, Conestoga Wood Specialties, and Valco Companies Inc.

In addition to helping people professionally, Mark also believes in helping people personally through volunteer work. Mark has coached leaders on “Business as a Mission,” traveling to Eastern Europe, India, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic.

People Join Organizations- They Leave Managers


Do you wonder why good employees leave your organization?

Dr. John C. Maxwell gives his opinion about this in his book Leadership Gold: “People quit people, not companies.”.

My conversation with a young professional twenty-something started simply enough.

“How’s the new job going?”

My eyes widened as I listened to this passionate young lady talk for more than half an hour about how she and many of her colleagues want so much to impact the organization they work for, but how management there is weak and how the leadership completely lacks direction. People are not held accountable, she explained. There is no collective vision as a team and new folks are not brought on board with any sense of excitement or motivation.

I nodded. I knew exactly what she was talking about. I’d seen it for myself in many instances. Eliminating the kind of frustration she was feeling is one of my greatest motivators in doing what I do, helping leaders move forward and build high-performance organizations.

So, what’s going to happen? It wasn’t hard to figure out. She made it quite clear—she won’t put up with it for much longer. Instead, she would become one of the many sharp, smart people I’ve encountered who choose to exercise their skills in more fertile fields instead of enduring such barren conditions. They go on to positively fertilize other organizations, contributing to a sustainable harvest by taking them to greater levels of efficiency and performance.

Meanwhile, those organizations with chronically weak and mediocre managers fade, eventually cease to operate, and die. Maybe not right away—it may take time, but ultimately they fail to survive.

If your organization has great leadership, is on the ball, and inspires and motivates all of its employees, including its young All-Stars, then you are indeed building a high-performance organization.

___________

In His Name HR helps organizations build high performance Human Resources programs. Visit them at In HIS Name HR or e-mail them here.

Mark A. Griffin is the founder and chief consultant of In His Name HR LLC. Connect with him on LinkedIn or Twitter.

 

In HIS Name HR, in conjunction with ABHE

2020 ABHE Annual Meeting ~ Rosen Plaza Hotel, Orlando, Florida


The Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) Annual Meeting

February 12–14, 2020 | Rosen Plaza Hotel, Orlando, Florida

Read The Press Release Here 

In HIS Name HR, in conjunction with ABHE, is excited to announce the 2020 Annual Meeting presentation topics.

Presentation One

How to Develop a More Effective Employee Search Process

It’s no secret that your higher education institution wants to succeed. It should come as no surprise that your employees also want to succeed! Naturally, there’s often a strong, positive relationship between the two—when employees succeed, so do the institutions they serve.

A key question: How can organizations most effectively find, train, motivate, and encourage employees’ success?

Primary Topics Covered

  • Marketing your institution in today’s difficult labor market
  • What makes employers attractive?
  • Where do institutions find the best employees?
  • What are the three most important steps of an effective hiring process?

This presentation helps prepare not only those in HR but also anyone who might have an effect on hiring in your organization. The presentation is highly interactive (including table exercises) and gives participants the opportunity to collaborate with other organizations and professionals.

Presentation Two

The Art of Employee Evaluation and Transition/Separation

Here, we examine the concept of a high-performance review process, and how your institution can optimize performance levels through an effective and enjoyable employee review process—a process that your employees will enthusiastically embrace and enjoy instead of dread.

We also discuss performance improvement plans that transition underperforming employees either to more suitable roles or out of the organization, and how to separate employees with grace.

Primary Topics Covered

  • Taking steps – simple, impactful, and timely – to make the process gracefully effective
  • Executing a comprehensive communication plan to all employees
  • Avoiding the common pitfalls in other organizations
  • Setting expectations
  • Employee policy manuals
  • Codes of conduct
  • Counseling and disciplinary procedures
  • Terminations
  • Labor law overview

The training is highly interactive (including table exercises) and gives participants the opportunity to collaborate with other organizations and professionals.

Learn More Here 

 

Visit us- Booth 119 – ABHE Annual Meeting!

About The Speaker

Mark is an accomplished HR expert with a fresh perspective. He believes in challenging people to think differently when presented with obstacles in any situation. His passions are inspiring, motivating, and helping others. Peers describe Mark as creative, proactive, determined, and eager to learn. Just a few of Mark’s professional skills include organizing, presenting, and problem solving.

Mr. Griffin received his Bachelor of Science degree in Human Resources Administration from Saint Leo University. He earned his MBA from Bloomsburg University while interning for Congressmen Kanjorski as a military liaison during the first Gulf War. Mark has completed several executive education programs at the University of Michigan.

Prior to leading In HIS Name HR, Mark worked for Quaker Oats Company, Kodak Inc., and Merck Inc., and private companies Woolrich, Conestoga Wood Specialties, and Valco Companies Inc.

In addition to helping people professionally, Mark also believes in helping people personally through volunteer work. Mark has coached leaders on “Business as a Mission,” traveling to Eastern Europe, India, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic.

 

Are You Having an Organizational Identity Crisis?

Are You Having an Organizational Identity Crisis?


If your organization is having an identity crisis.  You may be the last to know. The clues aren’t usually obvious, but you may sense something is wrong.

Do you spot any of these patterns emerging?

  • More and more employees are leaving
  • Quality and/or performance is trending downward
  • Your organization is missing deadlines
  • Your clients or customers are complaining more
  • It’s getting harder and harder to find good talent

These issues are not random blips on the landscape. They reveal deeper problems, those below the surface. Greater attention to structure and organization may be needed, but there is a core issue at stake: Organizational Identity.

An identity crisis may happen for a number of reasons. Some reasons are inevitable. Some are regrettable. But, many times an identity crisis starts from what are, initially, positive changes. What is positive at first, like growth or increased capabilities, can morph into quagmire without attention. This drag causes confusion and does not just hinder your workers but will inevitably affect your customers and outside contacts, too.

An identity crisis will likely coincide with these circumstances:

  • A change in key management, ownership, or structure
  • A new technology replacing an old way of doing things
  • Expansion into a new territory or demographic
  • Offering new services
  • Expansion and increased public visibility
  • New or changing partnerships, associations, or clients

Organizations, if they last long enough, experience seasons where renovating identity is crucial. This is a good thing. What your organization stands for or why it exists may seem obvious to you, but it needs routine upkeep to ensure everyone shares a cohesive vision. Creating and cementing your organization’s Mission, Vision, and Values are essential to new and continued success.

Organizational Identity answers the questions:

  • Who are we?
  • Why do we exist? 
  • How do we share that vision beyond ourselves?

Core values and identity should be found together—in a partnership with owners and employees. It should be built from the ground up to forge something solid and genuine. Identity can never be reduced to platitudes or window dressing. It shouldn’t stop at a new logo and updated policies. It must be the foundational way that your group functions, together and with the outside world

Organizations like charity: Water, Starbucks, and The Coca-Cola Company, for example, have all crystallized their organizational identity for us. But, more important, they have all reinvented or re-clarified themselves as times have changed and found continued success. With some effort or outside expertise, you can usher in higher performance for your organization, too.

So, what problems have you seen that were evident of an identity crisis?  Help us and our community of readers to learn from your experiences

 

Mark Griffin is founder and Chief Consultant at In His Name HR LLC. He has over 20 years of HR experience.  Follow In HIS Name HR on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

10 Great Reasons For Performance Management (Annual Reviews)


Most employees loath them; many managers avoid them. High Performance Organizations have them, and they do what they’re designed to do—evaluate precisely the performance of each employee.

Feel like you don’t need them? Here are 10 great reasons that should change your mind.

  1. Aligning performance to goals and objectives

Most organization employees I meet with say they have no idea what the yearly top two or three goals are for their organization.  A great performance program sets these goals as their starting point. Ninety-nine percent of employees in this country want to do well at work, but we lack leaders who know how to align their desire to achieve to the organizational goals.

  1. Providing a basis for promotion/transfer/termination

Many organizations are not transparent concerning how to be promoted.  A performance review process more readily identifies those employees who deserve promotion and those who require lateral shift (transfer) or need to enter into a remedial program. This system also aids career planning.

  1. Enhancing employees’ effectiveness

Most people really do want to be better at their jobs! Helping employees to identify their strengths and weaknesses and informing them of the organization’s expectations concerning their performance helps them to better understand the role they play and increases work efficiency. Feedback reinforces good performance and discourages poor performance.

  1. Aiding in designing training and development programs

Instead of creating “programs of the month,” you can use performance review data to more accurately ascertain training needs and identify skills that need to be developed in order to tailor-make the most effective training and development programs.

  1. Building teams

Counseling employees corrects misconceptions, which might result in work alienation. Performance management also helps employees to internalize the norms and values of the organization. (I have met leaders who have not talked to their employees about their performance since 2012!)

  1. Removing discontent

Performance management puts all employees on the same measuring tape. Identifying and removing factors responsible for worker discontent motivates them to perform better at work. Performance management helps to create a positive and healthy work environment in the organization.

  1. Developing interpersonal relationships

Relations between superiors and subordinates can be improved through the realization that there exists a mutual dependence that leads to better performance and success. By facilitating employees to perform introspection, self-evaluation and goal setting, their behavior can be modified. Better interpersonal relationships lead to team building.

  1. Aiding wage administration

Performance management can help to develop fair and more equitable base lines for reward allocation, wage fixation, raises, incentives, etc.

  1. Exercising control

A performance review process provides a means to exercise control of projects focused on, and helps keep employees aligned to the agreed upon annual goals and objectives.

  1. Improving communication

Performance management serves as a mechanism for improved communication between superiors and subordinates.  Often times managers shy away from counseling employees.  When the right system is in place, especially is it is employee driven, it forces discussions on a regular basis.

In closing, my experiences lead me to support employee driven programs.  Programs that rely on managers and leaders have a higher propensity for failure.  Simple yet meaningful programs that include goals, objectives, behaviors, an employee development component and stretch assignments meet what most employees’ desire.

How important are employee performance reviews in your organization?  Leave your comments below! 

___________

 

In His Name HR helps organizations build high performance Human Resources programs. Visit them at In HIS Name HR or e-mail them here.

Mark A. Griffin is the founder and chief consultant of In His Name HR LLC. Connect with him on LinkedIn or Twitter.

The Crucial Upside of Workplace Friction In HIS Name HR LLC

The Crucial Upside of Workplace Friction


Every workplace has friction—that’s the simple truth. Anytime you have a few people working together on something, differences surface that create drag. We shouldn’t be surprised when conflict or tensions arise. Instead, we should be prepared and have some tactics on hand to facilitate a cooperative working environment and healthier relationships. Friction has a bona fide upside.

In my decades of work in the field of Human Resources, I’ve learned that 3 major things have the potential to create workplace conflicts:

  • Inadequate communication
  • Lack of emotional control
  • Indefinite goals and boundaries

Here’s an example of all three creating a common situation of friction:

Project X must be finished in two months. The lower level manager fails to set legible parameters on a project when expectations and roles are not defined for the work. As the manager delegates the project, too much is left to speculation. Co-workers attempt to complete the work, but soon run into interpersonal problems as different ideas emerge. Frustration increases, tempers flare, morale sinks, and passive aggressive sabotage and gossip start. In other words, gridlock. A few team members inform the manager; however, by then, emotion is driving the situation. Decision-making is maligned and communication continues to falter. The project is tanking.

What to do?

A lot of repair work is needed to get things back on track and keep the project moving forward. First—and this is important—ditch email as a resolution tool. A sit-down, face-to-face meeting is necessary, and a concise description of roles and responsibilities must be presented. But a few other things are invaluable, too.

It’s important to reestablish a healthy culture with the team and ensure acceptable behaviormoving forward. This shouldn’t be done by lecturing. It shouldn’t be expressed in an exasperated tone either. Rather, make sure you conduct your meeting by modeling respect and integrity. Assume the best in your co-workers and back it up with words and actions that make it clear. Graciousness and amiability should preside, not hostility and annoyance.

Get the Right “Game Face” On.? Prepare yourself. Your “game face” must be a commitment to the greater good plus good faith efforts to buoy the environment and create a better working situation. It’s crucial to find common ground. This can be done with a simple and sincere reference to everyone wanting to do well, or a mention of some of your company’s most important values, or by outlining the basic goals of the project. It may be wisest to use a bit of each.

Conflict = Opportunity for Improvement.? It’s normal to dislike friction. Just remember, excellent organizations and great leaders have a habit of transforming conflict and tensions into occasions that make things work more smoothly, efficiently, and improve the positive bonds between employees. Don’t shrink from this opportunity. Instead of dreading conflict or becoming paralyzed by it, realize that conflicts can harvest new ideas and innovation—not just in how your company works, but also in how co-workers connect with each other.

Grace, empathy, forgiveness, cooperation, and better listening can be the result. If you treasure-hunt in the situation and invite that same positive attitude from your employees during conflict, better times are ahead.

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Mark A. Griffin is founder and Chief Consultant at In His Name HR LLC. He has over 20 years of HR experience.  In His Name HR helps organizations build high-performance Human Resource programs.

Visit them at In HIS Name HR or  Send Email

 

Yahoo! Scrapped Telecommuting—Should You?

Yahoo! Scrapped Telecommuting—Should You?


As a long-time veteran in the field of human resources (HR), I’ve seen telecommuting storm onto the scene through advances in technology. Telecommuting employees complete work from remote locations, and sometimes the method backfires.

In February 2013, Yahoo!’s CEO, Marissa Mayer, killed the long-standing policy that allowed employees to work from home. The news sent shockwaves in every direction, especially throughout high-tech industries. Many wondered whether the decision was a step backward and a signal of changes to come elsewhere.

Two months later, Mayer spoke at a human resources conference. She clarified that the new rule applied to just 200 of the 1200 Yahoo! employees. She reinforced the idea that collaboration and innovation happen best in an interactive environment. Even though the change was drastic for a tech company, she wasn’t backing down.

Many people feel their best work happens when they are uninterrupted and left alone, but even the best worker can hit some snags.

Five Common Pitfalls in Telecommuting

  1. Misalignment of organizational vision
  2. Loss of focus
  3. Derailed project or job expectations
  4. Poor time management Burnout (as work hours lengthen at a remote environment, like one’s home)
  5. Remember, the key principle for an ideal telecommuting situation is this:
  6. Working from home, or from another remote location, should include the same qualities that make work at the office productive.

Five Workplace Features that Help Telecommuters Succeed

  1. Workspace boundaries  – Can the employee shut the door when they need to work and otherwise maintain a good work-life balance?
  2. Ability to concentrate – Will children, friends, or other obligations frequently interrupt the employee?
  3. Organization – Can they make a schedule and stick to it?
  4. Productivity – Have they been given expectations and goals? Can they get help quickly if they hit an obstacle?
  5. Focus and Fitness – Can they take short, regular breaks throughout the day to stay fresh and avoid fatigue or burnout?

What single safeguard makes telecommuting most effective? A job description!

Do the groundwork and craft a solid job description for a telecommuter before telecommuting takes effect. When a manager latches onto telecommuting as a hot trend without making the necessary preparations, trouble lies ahead.

A job description is not only important from an employee management standpoint; it’s a strategic necessity.

Your organization’s productivity and growth can be stymied when skills and competencies are unknown variables. Be definitive.

What’s the future for telecommuting?

Telecommuting is here to stay! The kibosh on telecommuting seen at Yahoo! won’t be the norm. While a number of organizations may rein in their telecommuters, many organizations will increase their use of telecommuting.

They will also recognize the high value of the expertise from contracted workers through portals and agencies like UpWork.comFiverr.com, and Guru.com. Specialized workers will continue to work from home, their local coffee shop, or other spots as the trend becomes normalized and wireless networking becomes more widely available worldwide.

Now is the perfect time to set expectations and boundaries to make the best of the situation.

How many people do you know who telecommute? What has been your experience?  Would love to hear from our readers.

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Mark A. Griffin is founder and Chief Consultant at In His Name HR LLC. He has over 20 years of HR experience.  In His Name HR helps organizations build high-performance Human Resource programs.

Visit them at In HIS Name HR or  Send Email