Skip to content

New Year’s Resolutions From Your Employment Lawyer

By: Rebecca Goldberg

If you have decided 2024 is going to be a better year, you may have made some personal New Year’s resolutions.  You can bring these goals into the workplace as well to help your organization run better than ever.

Resolution #1: Get a checkup.

Schedule a checkup – with your employment lawyer.  You’re busy with business.  It’s difficult to keep up with all the changing legal requirements while moving business forward.  Just as you would schedule an annual checkup with your physician, schedule an “HR audit” with employment counsel to review your practices.  You can find and fix potentially costly mistakes before an employee or government agency points them out for you.  Counsel can help prioritize the resulting action steps to address the most urgent needs first.  A self-audit without counsel may inadvertently result in “smoking gun” communications if an error is found, so utilizing counsel under an attorney-client privilege is highly advised.

Resolution #2: Hire a trainer.

Now is the time to make sure your employees, especially supervisors, are well trained on all aspects of their jobs.  Connecticut law requires sexual harassment prevention training for new employees within six months of hire and new supervisors within six months of becoming a supervisor.  Employment counsel can conduct this training and customize it to your specific work environment.  Consider other trainings as well, such as supervisory skills training to empower your supervisors to take effective action while complying with the law.

Resolution #3: Read a book.

When is the last time you reviewed your employee handbook?  If your handbook was last printed using a mimeograph, an update is in order.  Even a handbook that is only 3 years old may need to be refreshed.  Employment laws change frequently, especially in Connecticut, so you’ll want to have counsel review and update your handbook to make sure all of your policies are in compliance.  And if a policy or procedure is not working for you anymore, see this as an opportunity to innovate.

Resolution #4: End that toxic relationship.

Are certain employees creating an unbearable work environment for others?  If the workplace bully refuses to treat others with respect, termination may be the best option.  Of course, you may be limited by collective bargaining agreements, individual contracts, or other laws, so consult with counsel prior to termination if you have any concerns.  And make sure to comply with all applicable laws when carrying out a termination.

Resolution #5: Find time to relax.

When you take the time to focus on employment law compliance, you may be able to sleep better at night.  You may not be able to prevent every claim, but you will put yourself in the best position to prevail in the event an employee or former employee brings legal action.  And that will bring you peace of mind.

*                                  *                                  *

The labor and employment attorneys at Berchem Moses PC can help you make 2024 a great year for you and your employees by advising on all aspects of the employer-employee relationship.