You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know – or Why “Knowing Some HR Stuff” Can Land You In Court

NEWSLETTER You Don't Know What You Don't Know HR

I hear it all the time from small business owners. “I don’t need an HR consultant. I know some HR stuff, and I can look up anything else on the Internet. How hard can it be?”

It is true. You can look up anything on the Internet. And it does not make any sense to add unnecessary costs to already small margins if you can download a free job description vs. having one made for you, or put an ad on Craigs’s List vs. paying another person to write one for you. But just like the proverbial fool who is his own attorney, if you are managing what is arguably the most complicated part of running a business without some on-going input from someone who is an expert at such things, you may unwittingly be doing yourself harm. One only needs to sit through a single court case of a small business employer trying to defend themselves against an adverse employment action charge to recognize that “knowing some HR” may not be enough to negotiate your way through the increasingly complicated myriad of Employment Law. Sure, anyone can look up the term “constructive discharge” and learn more about it, but until you get hit upside the head with the accusation, you are not likely to have ever heard that term. My point is, you don’t know what you don’t know.

Today’s Human Resources professionals are not only educated in the nuts and bolts of compliance with employment law and regulations, they have the knowledge of how each action or inaction related to how you manage your staff could affect the bottom line of your business. And we all know that The Bottom Line is what it’s all about.

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