All of your managers will have their own way of interacting with employees on a day-to-day basis. One manager may be the “fun” one, another is an “absentee” manager that is always in the back office, and another may be the disciplinarian. Combining different management styles is a great idea because there is no “one size fits all” when it comes to managing staff, and employees respond differently to each style.
No matter the delivery style, the policies and procedures for dealing with employees must remain consistent. If your rules are all over the board, it will lead to employee issues and even potential lawsuits. Below are some basic areas that need documented guidelines, and that managers need to be trained to handle.
Creating your restaurant’s policies & procedures
» Benefits: Determine if you are legally required to offer benefits, and document those guidelines. Be aware that certain changes in your business, changes in an employee’s work situation (such as a promotion or moving from part-time to full-time), and changes in federal requirements will mean that you need to revisit requirements periodically.
» Time Off: Research and create a Time-off policy that is fair and legal. Sick leave ordinances are based on municipality.
» Job Descriptions: Job descriptions/position plans must be in place and adhered to. Make them complete and descriptive. Ensure that all employees understand what is expected of them with a signature acknowledging their responsibilities at time of hire or promotion.
» Training: Training must be the same for each position.
- Use shift task logs to ensure that each employee is trained in the same manner.
- Teach proper safety procedures and emergency protocols to every employee.
- Explore online alternatives that track mandatory training to remain compliant.
» Employee Reviews: Constructive feedback helps develop an employee’s performance. Feedback must be clear and specific to reinforce positive behaviors and deter negative behaviors. Decide how management will provide feedback and create guidelines for every manager to follow. Have employees sign documentation after each review, indicating acknowledgment of the evaluation and then keep it on file.
» Disciplinary Actions: Disciplinary actions are one of the most important areas requiring consistency because treating employees unequally can lead to lawsuits. Be sure that all managers discipline policies and procedures employees according to your written guidelines, then document the disciplinary action, have the employee sign off on it immediately, and retain it in the employee file.
» Reward and Recognition: Reward and recognition programs are great for morale, but only if they are fair and consistent. Put a written policy in place about how to properly reward and recognize those employees who go above and beyond expectations.
» Promotions: Create criteria that an employee must meet in order to receive a promotion. Be sure to document how the employee met each criterion, and keep it in the employee’s file. This can keep managers from playing favorites and ward off potential lawsuits for discrimination.
» Terminations: Both voluntary and involuntary terminations have requirements on both the state and federal level, and must be handled properly and be fully documented. Be sure to check your state and local laws to ensure compliance. and federal requirements.
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