10 Tips for Leadership When You’re Not the Boss

by Evil HR Lady on September 19, 2019

When founders and CEOs look to hire and promote managers, they want people who exhibit leadership. But how can you exhibit leadership if you’re stuck in individual contributor roles? No one reports to you, and you’re not even a project manager.

Good news is, leader isn’t a title, it’s a group of characteristics, and you can acquire them, even if you’re not the boss. Here are 10 ideas:

1. Communicate clearly. Leaders don’t grumble behind closed doors when things don’t go their way. They don’t say yes when they should have said no. They say what they mean, and do so in a way that people understand. This is not advocating rudeness, but it is advocating dropping passive-aggressive behavior.

2. Learn flexibility. There’s rarely a “right” way to do something. If you are going to insist that things be done a certain way, you’re headed down the micromanager path, and that’s not what leadership is about. Ask yourself, “Is this the wrong way to do it, or is it just a different way?”

3. Don’t be a doormat. Leaders stand up for themselves, politely. Jerks stand up for themselves rudely. If somebody interrupts you in a meeting, simply say, “I’m sorry, can I finish?” If your slimy co-worker tries to dump her work on you, say, “That won’t be possible.” Does this mean you never do a favor? Absolutely not. You do do favors, but you do so because you are nice or because it benefits you and the company, not because you can’t say no.

To keep reading, click here: 10 Tips for Leadership When You’re Not the Boss

Leave your thoughts on leadership characteristics in the comments!

(This ran before, but I thought it was worth re-reading!)


Don’t Fall for this Indeed Identity Theft Scam

by Evil HR Lady on September 18, 2019

Michelle was looking for a job, and Rock Island County, IL, was hiring. She was excited when she got an email, sent through recruiting site, Indeed, inviting her for an interview. But before she could schedule the interview, the recruiter needed just a few things. 

For the next step, please email me the following information directly to [redacted]

1 – The photos of your Identification Card or Driver’s License – Front and Backsides
2 – A picture of your face (Selfie)
3 – The last four digits of your social security

Please make sure that you have:

– – attached all three photos

– – pics are not blurred

– – pics have a more than 800kb each size

– – all four ID’s corners are visible (not trimmed)

– – all text is clearly readable

I’ll be waiting for your message with all the required photos. After that, I’ll make a quick check of your background and assign you time.

There is part of that that makes a bit of sense–companies do run background checks. But, Michelle felt uneasy and asked the question is this a scam?

To keep reading, click here: Don’t Fall for this Indeed Identity Theft Scam


As an employee, you have rights. You may not be aware of all these rights, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. And now, if you’re a Google employee, you have more rights than the average employee. 

In a settlement with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Google agreed to post a list of rights that employees have. Most of these, such as the right to discuss your salary with coworkers, the right to unionize, and the right not to be retaliated against, are standard rights protected by the federal government. In fact, you should have posters in your workplace that detail those rights.

But, this settlement goes a bit more than those standard rights that we all have and they indicate a bit of what was going on at Google. For instance, there is this (formatting is in the original):

YOU HAVE THE RIGHT to discuss wages, hours, and working conditions with other employees, the press/media, and other third parties, and WE WILL NOT do anything to interfere with your exercise of those rights

To keep reading, click here: Google Forced to Post Employee Rights (Your Employee Should Have the Same Rights)


How Small Businesses Can Address Employee Lawsuits

by Evil HR Lady on September 16, 2019

While major corporations tend to have large, dedicated legal teams to protect them from employee lawsuits, small businesses rarely have those kinds of resources. But small business legal advice doesn’t have to be cost prohibitive just because you can’t afford a full legal team. Here’s what you need to know.

Prevention Is Key to Avoiding Lawsuits

Employee lawsuits are a risk from the moment you hire your first employee, even if that person is your best friend or brother-in-law. Consider hiring an employment lawyer to help you establish policies and create an employee handbook right from the outset. Then follow that handbook. There’s plenty of flexibility in how you want to run your business — just have it down on paper and doubled-checked by an expert.

To keep reading, click here: How Small Businesses Can Address Employee Lawsuits

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Man Brings Emotional Support Clown to Termination Meeting

by Evil HR Lady on September 14, 2019

I’m on record as saying when an employee asks for something look for a way to say yes. If you come to me and say you want to bring an emotional support clown to a meeting–any meeting–I will look for a way to say no.

But Human Resources people in New Zealand are nicer than I am. Or perhaps, they were blindsided and were so freaked out they didn’t know how to respond. I don’t know. 

Joshua Jack, a New Zealand ad man, received a notification to attend a meeting and said he could bring along an emotional support person. So he did — a clown.

To keep reading, click here: Man Brings Emotional Support Clown to Termination Meeting


Is it Sexist to Promote a Male Employee over Two Females

by Evil HR Lady on September 12, 2019

I manage three analysts: one male and two females. All analysts have been working in the field for a similar amount of time, but one of the women is currently on maternity leave. The male analyst recently asked for a promotion to a senior analyst position. This role doesn’t technically exist, so we’d have to create a new job title and job description. He’s a great employee and is willing to take on more work, but I’m concerned that creating a new position for him and not for the other two women in the group might be construed as sexist—especially since one of the women is out on maternity leave. I’m afraid that without the promotion, the male analyst will leave. But I’m also worried that if I promote him and not the others, I’ll get hit with a discrimination complaint. I know a quick fix would be to just promote all three of my employees, but I don’t have the budget to give everyone a raise, so I need to be selective. What should I do?

To read my answer, click here: Is it Sexist to Promote a Male Employee over Two Females


California Passes Legislation that May Kill the Gig Economy

by Evil HR Lady on September 11, 2019

California’s Senate approved, with a 29 to 11 vote, to require companies like Uber and Lyft to treat all contractors like employees. According to the New York Timesthe bill should sail through the Assembly, and Governor Gavin Newsom has already indicated that he will sign it.

It fixes the primary function problem

Earlier this year, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruled that Uber drivers, and similar workers, were, indeed contractors because they

  • Use their own equipment
  • Set their own schedules
  • Are free to work for competitors
  • Are responsible for their own profit/loss

The one problem was that these drivers perform functions that are central to the business’s mission. This law solidifies this and says that because driving is the fundamental function of companies like Uber and Lyft, these people are employees.

This doesn’t just affect these app-based employers. It could affect hairdressers, nail salons, franchise owners, and any number of other contract-based industries.

To keep reading, click here: California Passes Legislation that May Kill the Gig Economy


A  Washington state aviation company posted a job listing for a Human Resources Manager. Mostly, the job listing is pretty normal, mentioning things like employee relations, policies and procedures, and tracking vacation time. But, if you scroll down to the bottom, you find this gem:

“Those applicants that chose to include a photograph with their resume will be given first consideration for a personal interview.”

Lena Smith found it and did what you should always do with a sketchy job posting: 

To keep reading, click here: Job Posting: Applicants that Include a Photograph Will Be Given First Consideration


Why a Manager Should Never Pad Employees’ Timecards

by Evil HR Lady on September 9, 2019

I was recently promoted and will be taking over a team that previously reported to my boss. A couple years ago, due to a new law regarding exempt employees, the team was switched from exempt to nonexempt. They were given a nice bonus, $5,000, to help “soften the transition.” Recently, my boss let me know he’s been adding three hours per week to their timecards. Additionally, he allows them to clock out from home after leaving the office. For example, one employee left the office at 4 p.m. but clocked out at 6:15 p.m. I told my boss I would be stopping these practices. Am I micromanaging the team by asking them to clock out when they leave the office? 

To read my answer, click here: Never Pad Employees’ Timecards

Leave your own answer in the comments!


Gala Camacho spotted a job posting on LinkedIn that she found sexist, so she commented that they “might reach a wider audience if your job ad was not so gendered and/or white. #diversity #inclusion.”

The ad was for a Vice President of Engineering at Relevant Software and included an illustration of a white guy with a beard, casually dressed. Frankly, while I agree with Camacho’s point, I don’t think it’s a huge deal. A picture of some sort often draws attention to a job posting.

But, it became a big deal when Relevant Software CEO, Andrew Burak responded and defended the picture saying, “It’s just a very precise marketing approach and no more, no less. Do not look here for any inequality ground. According to our research, most of our potential candidates look like on the picture.”

To keep reading, click here: This Tech CEO Said Targeting Bearded White Men for VP Makes Sense