How To Get Business Communication Right

How To Get Business Communication Right

Clear lines of communication are essential in any sort of relationship and business is no different. If your company is to ever attain financial success, effective and clear communication is a must. Many businesses, however, struggle to get by precisely because the professionals who work there struggle to communicate clearly with one another. 

Everybody seems to agree that getting business communication right is a key element to growth, achieving goals and overall long-term profitability. When it comes to understanding the means by which you can bolster your existing communication regime and simultaneously pioneer new forms of communication, many professionals unfortunately flounder. 

Here’s how to get business communication right, and what mistakes you’ll need to avoid if you don’t want your signals to get lost in the noise.

Understand the signal and the types of noise

It’s impossible to understand the essentials of stellar business communication (or of any communication in general) without understanding the differences between the signal and the noise. Put simply, the signal is the message you’re trying to broadcast from one party to another. Maybe you’re trying to inform your boss that an important deal has just been struck, or perhaps you’re simply trying to tell another co-worker their email didn’t go through and you’re hoping they can resend it.

In other words, the signal is the pure message you’re trying to transmit undiluted to its recipient. The noise, on the other hand, is the irrelevant background information, useless trivia, unrelated data, external emotion and sound pollution which could prevent your signal from getting to where it needs to go. Pushing a message through this noise successfully is essential if the desired result is to ever be achieved. 

If you don’t understand the signal and the noise, you’ll never be able to fully grasp what it means


8 HR Compliance Challenges Small Businesses Face

8 HR Compliance Challenges Small Businesses Face

There are many regulations imposed on small businesses. Once you start hiring employees, you will need to abide by these ever-changing laws. Not only do you have to keep your finger on the pulse of federal agencies’ requirements, but you must also track changes at the state and local levels. Keep reading to learn about eight evolving employment and HR compliance regulations you’ll need to monitor.

1. Paying your employees at least minimum wage

The current federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. If you pay your workers less than that, you could be responsible for back wages and steep penalties.

Although the rate has been stagnant for over 10 years, there is a nationwide movement to increase it to $15 per hour. In fact, more than half the states and several localities have set their minimum wages higher than the Department of Labor’s standard.

If your state’s minimum wage differs from the federal limit, you will usually need to pay your workers the higher of the two. To find out how much you’re required to pay your team members, contact your state’s DOL branch.

2. Knowing when to pay overtime

A worker is exempt from overtime if they meet all of the following criteria:

  • They are paid on a salary basis.
  • They make at least $23,660 per year or $455 per week.
  • They perform exempt job duties, such as supervising two or more people.

For all others, you will likely need to pay at least 1.5 times their hourly rate for any time worked over 40 hours in a single workweek. Recently, the DOL increased the salary threshold to $35,568 per year or $684 per week. This rule will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2020. If any of your employees are exempt from overtime but earn less


How to Develop Emotional Intelligence in Your Business

How to Develop Emotional Intelligence in Your Business

Emotional intelligence is a key trait employers should be looking for in employees. 

According the World Economic Forum, emotional intelligence is one of the top 10 skills needed for workers at all levels of organizations in 2020 and beyond.  McKinsey Group predicts that the need for EI skills will outpace cognitive skills by 2030.  Yet in a recent article by the Harvard Business Review, only 18% of companies report that they have emotional intelligence ingrained in their culture.

Is your business in the 18% or 82%?  If you are not sure, statistically it’s much more likely your organization is in the 82% of businesses that do not have emotional intelligence embedded in their culture.

Either way, you want to know where your company stands and what its strengths and weaknesses are. Self-Awareness is the foundation of emotional intelligence at both the individual and organizational levels. You can’t grow and develop something unless you’re aware of it and know what the root causes are. Several ways to assess where your business stands in terms of emotional intelligence are:

  • Leverage current engagement and other surveys you may already be using. Many companies use their own assessments that include questions that are emotional intelligence-based.  See the EQ-related questions below to determine if any of those are on your engagement survey and you can use them to assess your where your organization stands. 
  • Conduct focus groups. While surveys are excellent for getting anonymous feedback, the context and detail that can be attained from speaking to people can make a big difference. Conducting effective focus groups that aren’t just opportunities for people to complain takes a lot of skill and planning. 
  • Complete an EI-based organizational assessment. If you don’t have an engagement survey you are using, then finding a simple tool to assess your organization’s

9 Recruiting Hacks for Your Company

9 Recruiting Hacks for Your Company

Recruiting is time-consuming and expensive, so it’s no surprise that staffing managers and talent management professionals are on the lookout for tips and tricks to ease the process while maintaining effectiveness.

In fact, the average cost per hire in the United States is just over $4,000. If you combine the cost with the average interview process duration of 23 days, you’re looking at a serious financial and time investment.

Recruiting well is no easy task. Yet, 32% of the workforce hoped to change jobs in 2019. It’s clear that there are many, many job seekers on the market, and it’s just a matter of attracting the right ones and keeping them on board throughout your recruiting process.

Luckily, there are several effective hacks that help cut down on both cost and process duration, while increasing your chances of discovering qualified candidates. Here are nine recruiting hacks you can implement today to create a smoother, more efficient process.

1.Craft an effective job ad

It should be obvious, but with all the job posts out there riddled with typos and irrelevant requirements, it bears stating – writing an attractive and well-edited job ad that matches the position is the ultimate recruiting hack.

There are candidates who will apply to every job in sight, but they’re not who talent management professionals like you are looking to attract. If you want top tier options for potential employees, make sure your ad is impeccable.

First things first, does the position title accurately reflect the role’s requirements? Most candidates search by job title, so make sure yours is aligned to attract those with the skill set you need.

Don’t simply cut and paste new ads from previous job postings. Though you should certainly reuse templates to cut down on time, update each position listing and craft


Should Your Small Business Rent a Coworking Space?

Should Your Small Business Rent a Coworking Space?

Many startup owners are hard at work trying to find an affordable workspace for themselves and their employees, but that’s easier said than done these days. Partly because the real estate market is so crowded in major metropolitan areas, more and more startup owners have been resorting to coworking arrangements or sharing an office space with workers from another company who help split the bill.

More often than not, coworking makes sense for startups, but only if those in charge are familiar with the arrangement and know how to make the best of it. When does coworking make sense for your startup? Here’s what you need to know about making the move into a shared working space.

Working from home isn’t always the answer

Many startups begin in the home, which is only natural given that most have relatively little cash to spare on expensive offices. Just because you’re crunched for cash doesn’t mean you have to put up with squalid working conditions, however. When working from home isn’t the answer, a coworking arrangement may be an alternative way to establish your business without breaking the bank. There are also many benefits to a coworking space that you can take advantage of outside of shared rent; shared internet services, electricity, and 24-hour access, for instance, can go a long way towards supercharging your startup’s initial foraying into the market.

The average costs associated with coworking arrangements are routinely lower than those associated with traditional business offices. This should come as little surprise, as sharing your space necessarily means that it’s not as valuable as it once was before. Don’t fret about your startup going stagnant because of an inability to work in shared conditions, however; many of those who rely on coworking arrangements were initially opposed to the setup but