Workplace Training

CA State Mandated Workplace Harassment Training — AB 1825

California law requires employers having 50 or more employees (which includes F/T & P/T employees and contractors) to provide at least 2-hours of interactive training and education regarding sexual harassment for existing supervisors every two years and to new supervisors within six months of employment in a supervisory position.

Disputes between a business and an employee can devastate a business; especially in protracted litigation. Few issues can destroy the morale, stretch beyond the expertise of HR staff, significantly interrupt and sometimes completely halt the workflow, and erode substantial assets like a dispute with an employee. It makes sense, whether your business is large enough to have the mandated training imposed or not, that you take solid, proactive steps to prevent disputes from happening in the first place.

I provide on site training that will teach:

  • An overview of the prohibitions against harassment, discrimination, and retaliation under state and federal law;
  • Examples of unlawful harassment, discrimination, and retaliation;
  • A review of the remedies available to victims;
  • Interactive question-and-answer period practical guidance about the prevention and correction of workplace harassment
  • Practical guidance about the prevention and correction of workplace harassment

I have taught over 2,000 employees. While some companies choose to use an online training source, the feedback that I have received almost unanimously confirms that employees prefer and learn more in a live, interactive session, with an experienced, engaging attorney.

I have just begun to also teach this course as a live webinar. So far, feedback has been positive, but there can be electronic issues regardless of the preparation. Give me a call and we can discuss the possibilities.

Workplace Harassment, Discrimination, Retaliation & Employer Policies

I also offer a course, similar to that required by AB 1825 above, to non-supervisory line staff. I have taught people in various industries such as auto mechanics, assessors, file clerks, road crews, accounting staff, etc. Preventing workplace harassment is a number one priority in limiting employer liability!

California state law imposes the duty on an employer that — once an employer knows or should know that harassment is occurring in the workplace – they must stop it from occurring, and take steps to prevent it from occurring in the future.

An employer’s policies and procedures can be an invaluable asset in numerous ways—if used properly. To be successful, the employees must know about, and more importantly- understand the policies and procedures. Ensuring that your employees know the rules, particularly those like harassment that have the potential of resulting in huge employer liability, and the consequences of breaking those rules, is a huge step towards providing a workplace free from harassment and discrimination—a workplace where employees thrive. Thriving employees equal productive employees…a win-win situation.

Please call for a free consultation to discuss your policies, procedures and training needs. It’s an easy first step to create a thriving, healthy work environment.

Multi-level Performance Evaluation Systems

I have created and refined numerous evaluation systems, and am particularly adept at crafting systems for multi-leveled companies. A strong, yet easy to follow performance evaluation system can provide numerous benefits to both large and small companies, perhaps the foremost from the business perspective being to reduce potential liability.

How does an evaluation system reduce liability? First, it provides the employer an opportunity to document the performance of all employees for the evaluation period. This allows the employer to identify problem areas—production, completing logs, meeting goals, co-worker relationships, timeliness, etc. This then provides the opportunity to discuss the issues in a well prepared, honest but kind manner which results in the setting of specific goals, timelines, and to establish benchmarks for the employee. Repeating this process for each evaluation period allows the employer to track the employee’s productiveness, but more importantly—to document any negative performance issues. This allows the employer to take immediate steps to address problem employees, without extreme exposure to an unfounded claim of harassment, discrimination or retaliation because the negative employee behavior, and the employer’s positive proactive steps to correct the bad or unproductive behavior is well documented.

Second, an evaluation system helps reduce liability because it provides an opportunity to treat employees well. It allows for recognition of having met goals or benchmarks, for improved performance, for maintaining excellent performance — it gives the employee much needed and sought kudos. A proactive, well rounded evaluation system also gives the employee the opportunity to set personal work goals, create new and better metrics to measure productivity, and possibly identify training opportunities that can benefit both the employer and the employee.

Third, my system teaches managers how to be effective, honest, open, but yet kind in providing feedback. It allows for the managers to gain the feedback of the employee’s perspective on how the employee feels about their performance.

Workplace Investigation

While I suggest that any significant workplace issues which require an investigation be given to an experienced, neutral, outside third party, there are often instances where a small inside investigation of an issue is appropriate. However, such investigations in the hands of an untrained, inexperienced employee can implode and quickly create a hostile work environment, often leading to liability.

My workplace investigation training covers the following:

  • Key elements in an effective investigation
  • How to interview witnesses
  • Evidence collection
  • Credibility determinations
  • Conclusions
  • Report drafting and format
  • Pitfalls to avoid