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Part I

Employers face many decisions when an employee wishes to return to work after an illness or injury. The choices you make can save you money or cost you. Unfortunately, the obvious answer is not always the best answer. In a six part series, we will examine typical mistakes and chart a course to save you money and aggravation.

One of the most common mistakes is an employer insisting an employee be released by their doctor for full duty before returning to work. The thought process inside most schools is "I cannot afford to pay anyone that isn't pulling their weight". Although this is a true statement, it is also true that the physical demands of supervising after-school-age children are not the same as the physical demands of caring for toddlers.

The financial risks that accompany insisting upon a full release from the doctor include increased workers compensation costs, inability to get workers compensation insurance at renewal, injured employees falling prey to "disability syndrome", which is the failure to return to work when it is medically possible. Studies have shown that an individual's sense of self-worth often comes from the ability to be productive.

 3 Essentials For Optimizing Employee Performance

Whether you have one employee or dozens, their performance is key to the long term success of your business. Providing employees with effective feedback is crucial in eliciting their optimal performance.
 
Here are three tips to giving clear and constructive feedback to your staff members.
 
1. Be Consistent
 
Schedule regular, periodic reviews for every employee. These reviews needn't be complex, lengthy affairs; in fact they shouldn't be. Rather, a few minutes of thoughtful, objective and honest feedback several times each year should do the job.
 
If not, and an employee is not performing up to your required standards, the hard truth is that most of the fault may lie with you.  Ask yourself these questions:
  • Have you hired the right person for the job?
  • Are you providing the necessary training and coaching?
  • Are you measuring how well your staff performs?
  • Are you holding people accountable regularly?
  • Have you created and emphasized the core values you want to guide your staff’s behaviors?

Do Your Meetings Suffer This Flaw?

Who hasn't sat through a meeting where decisions were made, agreed upon and then, in the intervening days/weeks/months that followed, nothing was done and no one held accountable?
 
That's because deciding isn't doing. As one prominent business writer bluntly put it, "Decisions are worthless...unless you turn them into commitments."
 
In a business meeting, decisions make intentions perfectly clear, but a committment holds someone responsible for acting on the decision - for actually implementing it.
 
Of course, a commitment is not a guarantee, but it is far more reliable than a decision.
 
Once a decision is made, unless you conclude the meeting with commitments of exactly who will do what and when, you will likely fall short of the finish line.

Finding, Hiring and Keeping Qualified Child Care Employees

One of the greatest difficulties any child care center faces is hiring and keeping good employees. After all, people with the ability to handle the noise, commotion and fatigue that comes with overseeing the educational activities, playtime and safety of a group of young children are not easy to come by.

According to childcare.net, the turnover rate for child care employees is one of the highest of any occupation. Turnover is an ongoing obstacle for child care providers as well as being disruptive for children when employees leave. High turnover at child care facilities has even been associated with poor developmental outcomes. “High turnover erodes the quality of care,” notes the Child Care Action Campaign (C.C.A.C.). http://childcareaction.org/

Below are some ways child care facilities are better able to find the right people, increase the quality of care and reduce turnover.

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