8 Common HR Issues for Small Businesses

Growing businesses rely on a happy, supportive sales force to reach maximum potential. Managing your team correctly is a key part of keeping your company smoothly sailing. Along the way, you will likely encounter a few hurdles involving different aspects of managing employees. These 8 common HR issues for small businesses can escalate if not handled correctly. Do you know how to handle these universal challenges?

Waning productivity: Here’s a philosophical question for the small business owner– which came first, the coffee break or the nap? Either way waning productivity is a human resources problem. Reassign coffee break times to boost productivity. Moving the break to the morning slot instead of the afternoon may tip your sales to the positive.

Employee quarreling: Squabbles happen but when you run a small business even a tiff can affect the environment. Overlook the occasional misunderstanding but do get involved for pot-stirring situations. Your small business slows when employees fight.

Bad hires: Somehow, your new hire turns out to be the laziest employee in your company. So how did that happen? Start all employees on “probationary hire” status. This gives you and the new guy a 1 or 2 week period to see if he is the right fit.

Employee reviews: An explosive, confrontational employee review won’t help you or the employee. Remind employees about upcoming reviews, hold them regularly and keep the results private.

Missing work too much: If one employee reports in sick constantly, customers and the other employees will suffer. After a subscribed amount of sick days, insist that employees bring medical notes when returning to work.

Micromanaging: A small business will always be small if you insist on micromanaging. Encourage trusted employees to make decisions and stand by them. Watching over every decision and transaction will stifle creativity–a needed component in many small businesses. Keep good employees from leaving by allowing them to help manage smaller areas of the business.

Employee drama: An employee with a flair for the dramatic is good if your small business is a window-dressing company. Otherwise, drama isn’t good. Chatting is okay, but discourage gossip and other theatrics with a one on one meeting.

Petty pilfering: Stealing from the company is a serious offense, even if it is pilfering. No employer wants to guard every pen and packet of paper, but if you suspect thievery you’ll need to be proactive. Take office inventory regularly, but avoid demeaning activities like desk searches or surprise inventories. A regular inventory announcement should discourage pilfering. If not, you’ll need to invest in a camera to catch your thief.