While We Were Working: Your Weekly Small Business HR and People Leadership Podcast

This weekly podcast for HR Pros and People Leaders focuses on topics like employee engagement, workplace culture, and HR law for the agile, modern workplace. Learn more at: http://whilewewereworking.com. Hosts Joey Price and Sommer Ketron bring their own personal perspective and years of experience to cover trending topics you might’ve missed while you were working. Visit jumpstart-hr.com for more episodes and to learn more about our HR Outsourcing support services.

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Episodes

Thursday Feb 15, 2024

Summary
In this episode, Joey, with guests Bill Banham and Christopher Bjorling from the People and Performance Podcast, is here to provide insights while covering various topics related to current trends in the world of work. They discuss impactful changes, such as the shift to remote work and the rapid advancement of technology. Exploring the long-term viability and impact of remote work on organizational culture, while also highlighting the use of podcasts as a strategic learning tool for HR professionals, offering insights and perspectives from industry experts. They also share success stories and impactful conversations from their very own People and Performance Podcast, which viewers interested in learning and continuing their personal and professional development can explore.
 
Takeaways
The world of work has undergone significant transformations, including the shift to remote work and the rapid advancement of technology.
Remote work has become a new norm for many organizations, and its long-term viability and impact on organizational culture depend on leadership and individual preferences.
Podcasts can be a valuable tool for HR professionals to stay up to date on industry trends and continuously learn. They provide bite-sized insights and perspectives from industry experts.
Success stories and impactful conversations on podcasts can inspire and provide valuable insights for HR professionals.
Continuous learning and staying adaptable are crucial in the ever-evolving world of work.
 
Chapters
00:00 - Introduction and Guest Bios
03:06 - Impactful Changes in the World of Work
08:05 - Rapid Advancement of Technology and its Impact on the Workplace
12:31 - Long-Term Viability and Impact of Remote Work
18:07 - Addressing Work-Life Balance in Remote Settings
23:09 - Podcasts as a Strategic Learning Tool for HR Professionals
29:11 - Success Stories and Impactful Conversations on the Podcast
35:45 - Conclusion

Tuesday Feb 06, 2024

Summary
In this episode, Joey and Sommer discuss two topics that are often considered taboo in business: religious inclusion at work and addressing negative employee sentiment. They explore the complexities of religious inclusion, the importance of cultural sensitivity, and the legal protections for religious accommodations. They also provide insights on how to handle employee grievances and foster a positive work environment.
Takeaways
Religious inclusion at work is becoming more important as employees seek to bring their whole selves to the workplace. Companies should create policies and practices that accommodate religious observances and foster a culture of inclusivity.
Legal protections exist for employees’ religious freedoms, and employers must make reasonable accommodations unless it causes undue hardship to the business.
Addressing negative employee sentiment requires open and honest communication. Employers should conduct one-on-one interviews to understand the root causes of dissatisfaction and work towards resolving them.
Consulting with HR professionals can provide guidance and support in navigating complex issues related to religious inclusion and employee grievances.
Chapters
00:00 Introduction
02:20 Religious Inclusion at Work
03:43 Shifting Culture and Expression of Self
05:23 Cultural Sensitivity and Religious Observances
10:00 Legal Protection and Religious Accommodations
19:18 Investigating Employee Grievances
24:26 Consultant’s Corner: Addressing Negative Employee Sentiment
 

Friday Feb 02, 2024

Summary
In this episode of While We Were Working, Joey and Sommer discuss the new independent contractor rule and the factors of the economic realities test. Emphasizing the importance of understanding the new law and its implications for businesses. They also discuss when businesses should start thinking about HR and the benefits of having HR support from the beginning. Overall, the episode provides valuable insights for people leaders and small business owners.
 
Takeaways
The new independent contractor rule is an important HR issue that businesses need to pay attention to.
The economic realities test consists of six factors that determine whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee.
Businesses should start thinking about HR from the beginning and seek HR support to avoid making costly mistakes.
Understanding the new law and its implications is crucial for businesses to ensure compliance and protect workers’ rights.
Chapters
00:00 Introduction and Overview
01:12 Setting up the While We Were Working segment
03:11 New Independent Contractor Rule
08:12 Discussion on the Factors of the Economic Realities Test
27:29 When to Start Thinking about HR in Your Business
30:42 Closing Thoughts
 
 
 

Wednesday Jan 17, 2024

Summary
In this episode, Joey and Sommer explore stay interviews' HR significance, vital for understanding employee motivations and retention. They emphasize the importance of stay interviews as a retention and recruiting strategy, highlighting the disconnect between understanding the value of retaining customers and employees. The episode covers the implementation of stay interviews and the benefits of creating a space for employees to be heard. Additionally, the conversation touches on working with international colleagues and highlights the significance of open communication and promoting cultural awareness. It concludes with the importance of cross-cultural collaboration in reaching different customers and employees in various regions.
Takeaways
Stay interviews are an effective retention and recruiting strategy.
Creating a space for employees to be heard can improve employee satisfaction and engagement.
Treating employees as valued assets is crucial for retention.
Conduct state interviews to proactively address reasons for turnover.
Consistency in messaging is important, even if it may seem repetitive.
Open communication and cultural awareness are crucial when working with international colleagues.
Collaborate cross-culturally to understand different customer and employee needs.
Chapters
00:00 - Introduction
02:20 - Definition of Stay Interviews
03:32 - Importance of Stay Interviews
05:17 - Implementing Stay Interviews
06:15 - Identifying At-Risk Employees
07:25 - Disconnect Between Customer and Employee Retention
10:03 - Treating Employees as Valued Assets
11:32 - Proactive Approach to Reduce Turnover
12:24 - Importance of Consistent Message
16:37 - Addressing Cultural Differences
17:57 - Promoting Cultural Awareness
18:57 - Encourage Open Communication
22:24 - Promoting Cross-Cultural Collaboration
23:55 - Conclusion
 
 

Tuesday Jan 16, 2024

Summary
This episode of ‘While We Were Working,’ Joey and Sommer delve into the world of remote jobs that prove unpopular and challenging to fill. They explore the reasons behind the unpopularity of specific work-from-home roles, shedding light on the difficulties in hiring for customer support positions. The duo also examines the concept of pet policies within organizations and the significant role pets play in employees’ lives. Practical considerations for implementing pet policies and the benefits of partnering with Jumpstart HR are also tackled in this insightful episode.
Takeaways
Some remote jobs are unpopular and difficult to fill, even in the current work-from-home trend.
The unpopularity of certain jobs may be due to factors such as limited access to personal devices and lack of clear career progression.
Employers should consider addressing challenges in hiring by reevaluating their employer brand and commitment to growth.
Implementing pet policies in organizations can improve employee experience and show support for employees’ personal lives.
Chapters
00:00Introduction and Overview 01:21Discussion on Remote Jobs02:51Unpopular Jobs and Difficulty in Filling Positions04:08Reasons for Unpopularity of Work from Home Jobs07:19Challenges in Customer Support Roles08:47Addressing Challenges in Hiring09:46Adapting to Changing Needs of Workers10:58Introduction to Consultants Corner11:42Discussion on Pet Policies in Organizations12:57Importance of Pets in Employees’ Lives15:52Implementing Pet Policies in Organizations20:46Practical Considerations for Pet Policies24:11Benefits of Working with Jumpstart HR25:43Conclusion

Tuesday Jan 09, 2024

Summary
In this episode, Joey and Summer explore how long work hours lead to burnout and not productivity. The hosts delve into the pitfalls of premature promotions, something consultants see occurring. While done with good intentions, they illuminate potential challenges, providing a thought-provoking exploration of the topic.
 
Takeaways
Employees who log off at the end of the workday exhibit a 20% higher productivity score, emphasizing the importance of maintaining a healthy work-life balance.
Limited work breaks contribute to burnout, with those who don't take breaks being times more likely to experience burnout.
Premature promotions can lead to a significant skill and knowledge gap, resulting in underperformance and increased stress for the promoted employee.
Disruption of team dynamics is a common consequence, with colleagues feeling frustrated if promotions are perceived as undeserved.
Strained relationships and a toxic work environment may result from premature promotions, affecting effective communication within the team.
Lack of job satisfaction and retention issues may arise, as employees feel overwhelmed and seek opportunities elsewhere that align with their skills.
 
Chapters
00:00
Introduction and Overview
01:47
Long Work Hours Lead to Burnout Not Productivity
16:27
Pitfalls of Premature Promotion
27:33
Wrap-up and Conclusion

Saturday Jan 06, 2024

Summary
In this episode, Joey and Summer discuss the mandatory employment law changes that may impact businesses in 2024. They cover topics such as OSHA reporting expansion, changes to non-compete agreements, cannabis use protections, changes to paid leave laws, and minimum wage changes. They also provide insights and advice on how to handle toxic employees in the workplace.
 
Takeaways
Stay informed about the mandatory employment law changes that may impact your business in 2024.
Be prepared to comply with new OSHA reporting requirements for certain employers in high hazard industries.
Stay updated on changes to non-compete agreements, as the Federal Trade Commission has proposed a rule to ban most non-competes.
Understand the new laws and protections regarding cannabis use in the workplace.
Chapters
00:00 Introduction and Overview
03:04 OSHA Reporting Expansion
05:32 Changes to Non-Compete Agreements
10:36 Changes to Paid Leave Laws
14:01 Cannabis Use Protections
18:12 Minimum Wage Changes
20:22 Consultants Corner: Dealing with Toxic Employees
31:44 Wrap-up and Conclusion
 

Thursday Dec 28, 2023

In this episode, Joey Price and Summer Ketron discuss Forester.com’s predictions for 2024, focusing on employee experience, AI, and recruiting. They highlight the challenges faced in 2023, such as inflation, hybrid work adjustments, and employee strikes. The conversation delves into the importance of employer’s commitment to employee experience and the potential impact of AI on recruiting, including the hiring of unqualified candidates and the creation of fake profiles. The hosts provide recommendations for organizations to navigate these challenges and emphasize the need for a balanced approach between talent and technology. The episode concludes with a discussion on addressing the issue of camera on, camera off in virtual meetings.
 
Takeaways
The challenges faced in 2023, such as inflation and hybrid work adjustments, have raised questions about employers’ commitment to employee experience.
AI in recruiting can bring both magic and mayhem, with the potential for hiring unqualified candidates and the creation of fake profiles.
Organizations should invest in employee experience programs to drive productivity and retention.
A balanced approach between talent and technology is crucial for organizations to navigate the future of work.
Chapters
00:00 Introduction
01:59 Forester.com’s Predictions for 2024
03:22 Challenges in 2023
06:08 Employer’s Commitment to Employee Experience
08:38 AI and Recruiting
14:13 Recommendations for 2024
16:36 Consultants’ Corner: Camera On, Camera Off
27:03 Conclusion
 

Thursday Dec 21, 2023

In this episode, Joey and Summer discuss the Fisher Phillips Labor Board highlights for the new year. They cover topics such as work rules, limitations on non-competes, planning for AI advancements, responding to union recognition demands, and sharing information and increased enforcement. In the Consultants’ Corner segment, they provide guidance on how to handle a sensitive situation where an employee discloses a medical condition after being given a performance improvement plan.
 
Takeaways
Employers should review their policies and handbooks to ensure they do not interfere with employees’ Section 7 rights.
There are increased limitations on non-compete agreements, and employers should ensure they are in compliance.
Employers should plan for advancements in AI and be aware of workplace surveillance and algorithmic management technologies.
Employers should be prepared to respond to union recognition demands and engage in conversations with employees about unionization.
Employers should be aware of increased information sharing and enforcement efforts between government agencies.
When handling a sensitive situation where an employee discloses a medical condition after receiving a performance improvement plan, employers should have a conversation with the employee, review their obligations for reasonable accommodations, and document the process.
 
Chapters
00:00 Introduction and Retreat
02:34 Fisher Phillips Labor Board Highlights
09:14 Limitations on Non-Competes
13:42 Planning for AI Advancements
17:00 Responding to Union Recognition Demands
19:45 Sharing Information and Increased Enforcement
22:59 Consultants’ Corner: Handling Medically Sensitive Performance Improvement Plans

Monday Dec 18, 2023

In this episode, we delve into an insightful HR BREW article exploring how companies strategically deploy redeployment programs to cushion the impact of layoffs. Additionally, we scrutinize the legality and ethical dimensions of job trials without pay, examining the difference between training opportunities and actual work contributions.
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