July/August 2017 Newsletter – I Have A Question – Response
I Have a Question
Many of my employees have children in school and it’s an unspoken expectation that I am supposed to purchase something from every employee’s child at least once during the year. I was reading through some old company policies and one stated that solicitation on company grounds was prohibited. How should I bring this sensitive subject up to my employees and begin to enforce it?
As leaders, our employees look to us for support not only in the workplace but in their personal lives as well. Attendance at weddings, celebrations of many sorts, sporting events and funerals is expected and in some cases, not optional. However, caution should be taken when supporting non-work related fundraisers or “solicitations” and here’s why.
- Once anyone in leadership supports a fundraiser for one employee, the door opens for all employees to ask for the same. This puts management in the hot seat and vulnerable to ridicule if they chose to support one fundraiser and not the other.
- An open door to solicitation in the workplace gives everyone permission to bombard everyone with all types of fundraising activities year after year. This can become a competitive game of war and cause resentment amongst employees who try to be 1st in line for support.
So, here’s how to handle the re-implementation of the old solicitation policy.
- Review the policy with the applicable resources to ensure it is still enforceable and the content is correct.
- Brief all supervisor employees on the current policy, ensure they understand it and provide guidance on how to handle issues of non-compliance.
- Advise all employees of the current policy and the date compliance is required. Note: Normally when a policy is already in place, there’s no need for a delay in compliance. However, in this case, the policy is new to many of the employees and giving time to review and ask clarifying questions is appropriate.