How to get rid of that “Bad Apple” in the shop - Human Resources management with Karla Dobbeck

Episode 30 | Challenges: Leadership Process

Guests: Karla Dobbeck

Every employer has to deal with the complex issues that are a part of employment law in the modern age. But they also have to run a shop that is well-tuned and efficient. Too often those two responsibilities conflict in ways that they don’t expect. In this episode of Making Chips, Jason and Jim are going to chat with Karla Dobbeck, a Human Resources specialist who has some very practical, insightful advice for manufacturing employers on how to deal with those “bad apples” that show up from time to time in a way that will protect you and your company from a legal standpoint.

The guys also want to let you in on a materials sourcing company they've been working with. It's 24 hours a day you can go on this amazing website, receive materials quotes, and even order the products you need to fulfill your manufacturing orders.  Use the promo code from this episode and receive a 15% discount through the end of July 2015!

Making an example of a troublesome employee

Karla Dobbeck Karla Dobbeck

The old adage is true, “One bad apple will spoil the whole bunch.” In a manufacturing company, morale, attitudes, and overall contentment in the workplace can be dramatically impacted by an employee who refuses to comply with company policy or production and safety standards. Karla Dobbeck recommends that you deal with those bad apples in a way that is clearly outlined in your employment policies, and to do so quickly and without apology. Making an example of one employee is powerfully effective in communicating your company values and seriousness about keeping them, to the rest of the work force. Listen to the audio to find out more about how to do this legally and wisely.

Sometimes the answer is not more rules

When issues come up on the shop floor or in the break room the tendency of management can be to make another rule to cover that sort of situation. The problem is that before long the company will have so many rules that nobody can keep track of all of them, much less enforce them fairly and consistently. In this episode of Making Chips Jim inserts his opinion about the need for “rules” and that oftentimes the answer is not to create a new rule but to have a private conversation with individual employees who need correction or guidance. This not only addresses the issue at hand, but does so in a simpler way that builds relationship and company culture at the same time. Learn more about how Jim does this by listening to this episode.

Document, document, document

In our lawsuit-happy culture, it’s a sad but true fact that employers have to be very careful and clear when taking action against an employee for any reason. That’s why it’s important for every disciplinary or corrective action to be documented clearly by the employer so there is a paper trail both of the history of the offenses in question and of the actions that were taken each step along the way. This way, if the time comes when an employee has to be terminated, the employer has a strong case for the cause and need for the termination that will make their case in court, should it be needed. You’ll also be able to document your compliance with OSHA requirements. Karla Dobbeck has a wealth of insight into this subject and you can hear more on this episode of Making Chips.

The most common employment mistakes employers make

Karla Dobbeck has seen it all as a Human Resources consultant and advisor - the good, the bad, and the ugly. In this episode of Making Chips she shares what she considers to be the most common and most serious mistakes that employers make regarding employment law and gives common sense, practical advice on how manufacturing employers can avoid the same pitfalls. It’s worth the price of listening, so grab a cup of coffee, a pen and paper, and get ready to take some great notes that will help you improve your processes and procedures surrounding the employment practices of your company.

Outline of this episode

  • Social media as it relates to brand exposure - Jim’s story.
  • Making Chips is going on the road - to San Diego! Hear the details on this episode.
  • Invitation to be interviewed on Making Chips - give us a call - 312-725-0245
  • Human Resources for the Manufacturing industry with Karla Dobbeck.
  • When to “make an example” of a troublesome employee - cell phone issues, safety issues, etc.
  • When to create “rules” and when to rely on private conversations with individuals.
  • Dealing with employees who are chronically late or missing work.
  • Addressing issues where employees seem to be abusing break time.
  • Special considerations for employees who are pregnant mothers.
  • How to properly document employee problems and firing decisions.
  • Employment and termination mistakes most often made by employers.
  • How to deal with unemployment claims when an employee has been terminated.
  • Can part-time employees file for unemployment? Yes, in these situations.
  • How to avoid the “games” that keep bad apples in your company.

Links mentioned on this episode - get your 15% discount by using the code from this episode (expires July 31, 2015)


Human Resource Techniques - Karla’s company -

Karla on LinkedIn -

Or call us at 312-725-0245

Making Chips on the road - Tuesday, July 21st, 4 to 6 PM - 10211 Pacific Mesa Blvd, San Diego - come in and say “If you’re not making chips, you’re not making money.” and get a free T-shirt!

Tweets you can use to tell others about the episode

[shareable]#Employment and #termination mistakes most commonly made by #employers[/shareable]

[shareable]Getting the #badapple out of your company. Practical advice to safeguard your company[/shareable]

[shareable]#Unemployment, #termination, and #employeerights - issues you’ll learn about on this episode[/shareable]

[shareable]Want to #makeanexample of that troublesome employee? Here’s how to do it legally[/shareable]

[shareable]#MakingChips will be in #SanDiego July 21st, 2015 - get the details in this episode[/shareable]


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