It's Not Me, It's You

Have you ever talked to your employee about performance issues and they decided it was a personal attack?

"My boss just hates me. Joe makes mistakes and he never gets in trouble."

It never crosses their mind that there is an actual problem with their work or their attendance or their attitude. "She just doesn't like me" is the only plausible explanation for why they've been written up. Heaven forbid it may be that they actually made mistakes, broke rules or caused problems.

And somehow, they also know any discipline or lack of discipline that everyone else in the company has had. "Sally screws up all the time but she hasn't gotten any warnings." Our victim must have special supernatural powers - the ability to know everything that goes on in your files, your office and your mind. Pretty impressive. I bet if you knew they had that power, you wouldn't have bothered telling them to stop coming in an hour late and leaving fifteen minutes early. Especially since you let Sally and Joe do it all the time!

Accountability...there are just some employees that just don't have any idea what that is or desire to take it on. The ones that take accountability for their mistakes actually stand a chance. As for the ones that don't, if fear isn't a driver that puts them back on track, then it's only a matter of time before they're gone...or you'll wish they were.

I'm sure there are a few horror stories out there...anybody want to share?

New OSHA Poster Released — Replacement NOT Required

Ashley Kaplan, G.Neil Compliance Attorney

Yesterday, OSHA announced the publication of its new "It's The Law" poster. Since that announcement, we've heard from a number of concerned customers who have received calls from companies promoting sales of their versions of the new poster. Some of these companies have implied that it is mandatory to replace their old poster.

As stated in the news release, issued by the Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), "the OSHA poster, also known as the OSHA notice of employee rights, is required to be displayed in every workplace in America. The current edition of the OSHA poster is still valid; employers are not required to replace their existing poster with the new version."

For clarity, the federal OSHA poster was updated with additional language and new graphics. The poster now depicts a variety of employees in various settings – from the medical field to the construction industry – and precisely explains how employees may file a complaint, report an emergency, or seek OSHA advice.

For more information, visit


Federal Minimum Wage Update - Back to the House

It's been quite a busy week for our Compliance and Research Attorneys, here at G.Neil. They're working hard to track the Federal Minimum Wage bill and what that will mean for us and for you, so they've asked me to relay the latest update.

With two key developments in the Senate this week, the potential for the federal minimum wage increase in 2007 has strengthened. We mentioned that on Tuesday, the U.S. Senate voted to add a package of tax breaks for small businesses to the bill - this was approved on Thursday in a 94-3 vote. The modified bill is now headed back to the House. Analysts are pretty sure that the Senate and House will reach a compromise and that the final bill will go to President Bush to be signed.

President Bush issued a statement regarding the latest developments that shows his support of the bill. You can read it here.

Helene Kopel, G.Neil Blog Guru

Important Federal Minimum Wage Update

Federal Minimum Wage Bill Still Alive as Senate Moves to Add Tax Breaks for Small Businesses

With the latest development in the Senate this week, the federal minimum wage change is one step closer to being passed in 2007.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Senate voted to add a package of tax breaks for small businesses to the bill — this move may ultimately lead to its approval and signing by President Bush.

If the bill passes the vote in the Senate, which is expected to happen this week, it will go back to the House for "discussions." When the House passed the minimum wage bill earlier this month, it was without any tax breaks, so it's got to go back for agreement. Then, if the House and Senate agree on a final version of the bill, it will head to the President.

Leading analysts predict that with the addition of those tax breaks for small businesses, the President is much more likely to sign the bill.

Keep coming back, we'll keep you posted.

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