Sunday, September 30, 2007

Termination Checklist

Employee is making work errors or exhibiting behaviors which are unacceptable. Investigate and define the problem, attempt to remedy the problem, and then monitor the employee for improvement. If the problems continue, consult and document disciplinary action or the appropriate policies at your organization. Review any policies to make sure you follow all procedures. Obtain a second opinion.

Continuing non-improvement leads down the disciplinary action path to suspension or termination. Based on policies, treatments of other staff, and severity of problems, determine if path leads to termination or suspension with the next step being termination.
If termination is the determined outcome, consult legal for issues, obtain a second opinion, consult severance package, benefits/cobra, letters of references, and address email and phone forwarding issues before termination date.

Schedule a termination meeting:

1. State reason for meeting.
2. Thank employee for his/her efforts.
3. State the decision is a company-wide decision based on the employee's current disciplinary action.
4. State that you cannot find other positions within company that would be more suitable.
5. Discuss the company policies on all items with the employee (severance package, benefits, COBRA, letters of reference.)
6. Obtain keys, badges, etc. from the employee. Inform employee when they can pick up their stuff.
7. Stand up and shake hands, stating Good Luck to you. Escort person out of the building.

Notify staff the next day in a brief email or at the next meeting.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Key Position in My Organization

Job Title: Landscape Architect
Education Requirements:

MLA (Master’s Degree in Landscape Architecture or related)
Work Experience:

Work experience requirements are flexible; however, what is most important is that the applicant demonstrate analytical and creative problem solving abilities and practical thinking skills. This experience must be demonstrated through a portfolio of prior work experience in the field of landscape architecture or landscape design. The emphasis of our firm is on conservation and the American style of landscape design. However, we also design Japanese Gardens and other styles of landscapes.
Hiring/Report Manager:

Send resume and three portfolio sample photocopies to one of the following:
Maureen Dostert, 2 Lakeland Drive, Durham, NC, 27713
Fax: 919.444.5483
Phone: 919.490.8405

Job Summary:

This position requires the applicant to use tools x, y, z, and a. These tools will be used to demonstrate the initial problem and then show the steps used through to the final solution to address in the proposal. The use of these tools can be demonstrated through the portfolio. This position requires independent and group creative problem solving experience, incorporating the solutions into the drafts, and making the presentation to the customer. The applicant will be required to monitor site activity to confirm that the agreed upon solution is being implemented.
Compensation depends on experience, and is based on the industry standards and includes full benefits. Located in a renovated warehouse with walking trails and upscale eateries nearby. Hours, mostly day hours (9-5); however, flexibility is required and may include a few hours after work or on Saturday or an 8:30 am site visit.
Characteristics Required:

This position requires that the applicant possess analytic skills along with creative problem solving skills along with excellent writing and verbal communication skills. The applicant must be comfortable with a range of decision making styles, such as group consensus to independent decision making. Excellent interpersonal skills are required since the position will involve consultations and communications with a variety of people on a variety of levels. The applicant must be able to work positively with other team members and also independently. The applicant must be motivated and have a desire to creatively solve landscape and design issues in the best possible manner balancing creative processes and practicality. A positive can-do attitude is required along with a sense of humor because life demands it.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Assignment Two---Interview Report

I paired up with someone at work who humored me with this assignment. We interviewed each other for about five minutes each; however, I went over as the interviewee because I strayed off topic and was not as concise as I should have been.

Most of the interview questions were taken from the following website:

What did you learn? I used to be very succinct in interviews but I have discovered that I socialize too much when interviewing. When people ask why are you trying to get back into the writing profession or why are you making a switch from working in the hospital to information science or whatever question they ask, I give a long-winded explanation of the last six years of my life. I have tried to explain I never left. I had a bad car accident and there were massive layoffs in the park and I needed a job. I was able to find hospital work after a ten-year absence. I have had many people calling about writing jobs but I am not interested in short-term contract work because of the medical insurance issues. Since I knew the person I was interviewing with, I found I was able to be more concise and not feel I need to explain so much. I really need to work at addressing the question professionally and succinctly and to concentrate and not be distracted.

This leads me to ask: What is too much information and what is just enough? I think sometimes you and the interviewer are comfortable talking and well you start talking about life. And stuff happens. I didn’t use to be informal or casual in interviews. I think I have used this information to test the interviewer. Do I want to work for people who do not get it? I hopefully am to the point that it is just a sentence or two about why I didn’t work for a year and why I ended up working at the hospital.

I also use humor more than I should so the interviews become delightful discussions about the job and my experience and of course graduate school. However, I think I need to minimize the humor to make the interviews more professional.

I also learned that I would answer a question not asked as I am answering a question about other information. The interviewer then takes this question off of the list.

How much interviewing experience have you had already? I have had a fair amount of interviewing experience in the past but not a lot for the last five years. However, I have had three interviews in the last six months. It was interesting to read some of the interview information listed at the various web sites provided and to see how I used to interview versus how I interview now.

For example: One of the references I read mentioned something about trying to interview at a time of day for which you are used to functioning. I work 330 to midnight and so I told the interviewer during the phone interview that I am typically up until 4 am. So she schedules me for an 830 am interview that includes a presentation of my web pages in a conference room in front of a group of five people. I asked her if we could change it to later in the day and she said that was the only time she had. So I went into this interview for the experience and not with a plan to get this job. I knew no matter how much coffee I had it would not be my best.

Another reference mentioned the interviewer decides within the first five minutes if you are the one they will hire and after that the interview is just pleasant discussion about the job. How do you know if you are having a pleasant discussion about the job with charming people or that you are not even being considered?

If you have not interviewed someone else before this, how was it different from being the interview-ee?When I interviewed my coworker, I was probably too casual because I knew her. I took some of the general questions from the following web site listed on page 1. I kept the questions general and open-ended. I found as I listened to my coworker, I found myself asking questions out of the order listed because she would say something that answered an unasked question. In addition, at the end I had to go through my list and make sure I didn’t miss any questions because the interview path did not follow the list of questions.