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William Manchee

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Blogs by William Manchee

Defending the Small Business - Part 19 - Employees, Double Trouble
1/11/2009 6:23:29 PM
Employees are often a critical part of the small business operation, but managing them is difficult and fraught with peril...

Good employees are critical to the success of any small business. The owner usually can’t do everything himself, although some owners try. It’s important to find employees who are capable, dependable, and have a good, positive attitude. But often that is a very long and time-consuming process, which few employers have the time or patience to perform consistently. Consequently, the process is often short-circuited, resulting in substandard employees and performance.

In my own situation, finding good employees has been one of my most difficult tasks. Good legal secretaries and paralegals command high salaries. In my early years of practice, I couldn’t afford an experienced paralegal or even a top notch legal secretary. As a result I had to hire inexperienced secretaries and train them. This wasn’t a very efficient way to operate, as I was forced to spend my valuable time training employees.

To make matters worse, after I got a secretary or paralegal trained, she often would get lured away by a big firm who could pay her a much larger salary. This is just one of many problems in dealing with employees. Another big one is finding competent employees.

Prospective employees tend to exaggerate their experience and training. Few small business owners have the time or patience to thoroughly test employees to verify their skill level. Nor do they bother to verify resumes. It’s human nature to trust people and to believe what they tell you. Unfortunately, in today’s world, this is a very perilous practice.

The process of screening and selecting employees can be delegated to professionals or employees trained specifically to perform that task. However, this can be very expensive, and there is no guarantee that the employee placed with your company will be any better than someone you personally hand picked.

Once you select and hire an employee, you then face a whole host of other issues such as payroll, health insurance, sick time, vacation pay, workman’s compensation, and retirement. All of these are highly complex issues which few SBOs enjoy dealing with, yet failing to effectively deal with any one of them could be fatal to a small business.

For an SBO many of these issues can be handled by others. A payroll service can be employed to handle payroll, and a good insurance agent will do the paperwork for all your insurance needs. An actuary or brokerage house can handle your pension or 401K needs. It’s important that the SBO is not distracted by these types of problems. Delegate them to other employees and professionals who are trained to handle them. Just be careful in the selection process. Get a referral from someone who has used them in the past and is very satisfied with their performance. Beware of second-hand and "brother-in-law" referrals, in which the person giving the referral has no personal knowledge of the professional's competence.

Next - Getting an attorney



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More Blogs by William Manchee
• Why Many Intelligent and Talented People Fail in Business - Monday, May 07, 2012
• Getting the Mail Can Be Risky Business - Friday, May 04, 2012
• Consumers Suffer Grievous Injury When Creditors Improperly Report Their Credit after Bankruptcy - Thursday, May 03, 2012
• The Effect of Print on Demand to the Small Press Author - Monday, July 04, 2011
• Nine-Eleven's Impact on the Small Press Author - Sunday, July 03, 2011
• Has Your Mortgage Company Ripped You Off? - Saturday, August 07, 2010
• Wrongful Foreclosure - Tuesday, February 16, 2010
• Don't Throw Away The Evidence - Friday, January 15, 2010
• Brandy - Saturday, October 17, 2009
• Why I Write in Different Genres - Wednesday, August 12, 2009
• Cash for Clunkers Bad Idea for Many Consumers - Monday, August 03, 2009
• Beware of Debt Negotiators - Tuesday, May 05, 2009
• Top Ten Reviewers - Tuesday, April 28, 2009
• Debt Collector Put Out of Business In Texas - Sunday, April 26, 2009
• Defending the Small Business - Part 23 - Changing Your Ways - Tuesday, April 07, 2009
• What Every Bankruptcy Filer Should Know - Part 3 - Will Filing Bankruptcy Ruin Your Credit? - Thursday, March 19, 2009
• Defending the Small Business - Part 22 - Bookkeeping and Accounting - Wednesday, March 11, 2009
• Chill, It's No Big Deal - Sunday, March 01, 2009
• What All Bankruptcy Filers Should Know - Part 2 - Wednesday, February 25, 2009
• Defending the Small Business - Part 21 Form of Business - Thursday, February 19, 2009
• What Every Bankruptcy Filer Should Know - Saturday, January 31, 2009
• Defending the Small Business - Part 20, Getting an Attorney - Sunday, January 25, 2009
•  Defending the Small Business - Part 19 - Employees, Double Trouble - Sunday, January 11, 2009  
• Defending the Small Business Under Siege - Part 18, Loan Consolidations & Workouts - Sunday, January 04, 2009
• Defending the Small Business: Part 17 - Bankruptcy: Friend or Foe? - Monday, December 29, 2008
• Tarizon: The Liberator Launch Update - Friday, December 26, 2008
• Defending the Small Business - Part 16 - When the Constable Knocks - Friday, December 05, 2008
• Defending the Small Business - Part 15 - State & Local Taxes - Saturday, November 22, 2008
• Defending the Small Business - Part 14 - Dealing With IRS Collections - Wednesday, November 12, 2008
• Defending the Small Business - Part 13 - Uncle Sam, The Sleeping Giant - Thursday, November 06, 2008
• Defending the Small Business - Part 12 It's Not As Bad As It Looks - Monday, November 03, 2008
• Defending the Small Business - Part 11. Misfortune - Tuesday, October 28, 2008
• Defending the Small Business: Part 10. Competition - Thursday, October 23, 2008
• Defending the Small Business. Part 9. Theft & Embezzlement - Monday, October 20, 2008
• Defending the Small Business - Part 8. Greedy Lenders - Sunday, October 19, 2008
• 7 - Defending The Small Business: The Credit Conspiracy - Saturday, October 18, 2008
• 6 - Defending the Small Business - Giving it away. - Thursday, October 16, 2008
• 5. Defending the Small Business: Starting on A Shoe String - Wednesday, October 15, 2008
• 4. Defending the Small Business: Suffocation - Tuesday, October 14, 2008
• 3 - Defending the Small Business: Looting - Monday, October 13, 2008
• Understanding the Current Economic Meltdown - Saturday, October 11, 2008
• 2 - Defending the Small Business - Doomed From Day One - Saturday, October 11, 2008
• 1 - Defending the Small Business: Introduction - Friday, October 10, 2008
• The Stan Turner Mysteries - Sunday, March 25, 2007


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