Today's leader is being challenged more than ever. "Do it because I said so" is not effective, and the importance of treating employees as customers is key to success.
In his new book titled "The Art of Majoring in Minor Things," organizational psychologist Jules Ciotta says effective leaders need to encourage their workers to share their thinking, even to be free to assertively disagree.MORE
The Coalition to Stop Tariffs on Printers and Publishers is asking newspapers to take a stand and join the fight against unwarranted preliminary countervailing and antidumping duties imposed this year by the Department of Commerce on Canadian imports of uncoated groundwood paper, which includes newsprint used by newspapers, printers and other publishers. Combined, these duties climb as high as 32 percent.
Here are two ways to help now:MORE
On March 1, reversing the Court of Appeals, the Arkansas Supreme Court ruled that a part-time grocery store security guard was an independent contractor, and not an employee, for purposes of Workers' Compensation.
The significance of this decision for newspaper publishers in Arkansas is that the primary factors relied upon by the Arkansas Supreme Court are usually present in the contract relationship between newspaper publishing companies and its independent contractor newspaper carriers.MORE
Recently, a former newspaper carrier filed a wage claim with the North Carolina Department of Labor, claiming employee status at a daily newspaper in the state. The newspaper carrier filed with the state Department of Labor, rather than federal DOL, because the federal wage and hour law contains a complete exemption for newspaper carriers; the North Carolina wage and hour law does not.
Of course, the newspaper stated that the individual was an independent contractor, not an employee. As part of its investigation, the North Carolina Department of Labor asked the company to provide specific information, in order to determine whether there was an employer/employee relationship.MORE
On Feb. 26, the NLRB vacated its recent ruling in the Hy-Brand Industrial Contractors case, which overruled the National Labor Relations Board's controversial Browning-Ferris decision.MORE
In this column, I have been predicting for some time that when all three Republican seats of the five-member National Labor Relations Board were filled by President Trump's appointees, the NLRB would begin reversing/overruling some of the Obama Board's more egregious decisions that demonstrated an outright hostility toward employers.
Chairman Philip A. Miscimarra's term expired on Dec. 17, 2017. On Dec. 14 and 15, Chairman Miscimarra went out "with a bang!"MORE
To inspire employees and command respect, always speak and act in the organization's best interests. Here are some tips to help you lead by example.MORE
This month's column reports on two National Labor Relations Board administrative law judge decisions involving the issue of whether someone is an employee or an independent contractor. In both cases, former NLRB General Counsel Richard Griffin had urged the ALJ to rule that merely classifying someone as an independent contractor is an independent violation of the National Labor Relations Act. This is legal adventurism in an attempt to make new law.
In one of the cases, the ALJ found independent contractor status and chose not to reach that novel issue. In the second case, the ALJ found employee status and agreed with the NLRB general counsel, finding that the misclassification of the individuals as independent contractors was a per se independent violation of the NLRA. With a new management majority sitting on the NLRB in Washington, let us hope that this legal adventurism will be reversed.
I also report on a new NLRB case involving an employer's texting and confidentiality rules, as well as a new court case addressing the ability to discover social media passwords in litigation.
This may be my final blog post, for reasons I explain in its opening paragraphs.
So I'm using this last opportunity to sum up the huge challenge that faces newspaper companies – and the things I believe could possibly turn the tide from ongoing decline to growth.
It's a very tall order – but with the right leadership and commitment of resources, perhaps it could be done.MORE
One drawback to great teamwork is that, because of the effort and time it takes to work well together, team members may become isolated from the rest of the organization. To keep that from happening to your team, here are some questions team members should be answering periodically.MORE
In concurrent board meetings held Wednesday, June 5, directors of the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association (SNPA) and the Inland Press Association unanimously approved a plan to consolidate the two associations, effective October 1.
Details of the plan approved by the two boards will be sent to members of both associations on June 7 for their consideration and vote. The result of the member balloting is expected to be announced on June 28.
The consolidated association is crafted to be the champion of the newspaper industry and a proactive voice that promotes the value and contributions of newspapers to the communities that they serve.More
Judging newspaper print quality isn't a subjective undertaking but a matter of determining how well a paper meets a set of industry standards, according to Kevin Conner, quality assurance manager for The Washington Post.
"The key always rests on ink density and color registration. Those are the key components," he said.
Contest entrants with SNPA's annual Print Quality Contest are evaluated on how closely they meet the standards of SNAP, Specifications for Newsprint Advertising Production. These can be measured objectively with tools such as a densitometer for ink density.
Conner has chaired the SNPA contest for 15 years. Conner said SNAP standards not only make for a fair and objective contest, they offer individual publishers a way to judge for themselves how well their printers are doing the job.
A state-of-the-art printing press certainly helps, but the skills needed to make any press perform are paramount.
"No 1, know how to set ink and water balance correctly," Conner said. "No. 2, color registration: Be able to keep all the color pages in perfect register.
"And then, something that's kind of an intangible but extremely important: You need to have a press that's well maintained. These are the factors that are behind good printing. You have a workforce of highly skilled press operators who know their jobs inside and out."More
Very recently, a daily newspaper in Tupelo, Miss., received a determination from the Mississippi Employment Security Department that its newspaper carriers are employees. The decision totally ignores the exclusion granted by the legislature in 2012. Needless to say, the newspaper vigorously protested, appealed this determination, emphasizing the provision. The State of Mississippi backed off completely, agreeing that the newspaper carriers are not eligible for benefits and the publishing company is not liable for unemployment taxes or payments made to newspaper carriers.More