A common topic we see on our message boards is attendance policies. A lot of people are always looking for advice on this subject. I am going to share mine in a moment, but there are two things you need to take into account with your policy.
- You have to consistently implement this. This means no exceptions unless you are willing to make that exception permanent and in writing as an adjustment to the policy. The second you waver on this, your policy is useless.
- Your policy needs to match your company's core values and culture. This is mistake we see often. Business owners will borrow things that work for others without doing the gut check of “Does this match the culture of my company?”
The policy I am sharing below is VERY effective for me. We always enforce it and it matches our culture, which places high value on individual achievement and independence.
We allow six unplanned absences in six months. An unplanned absence means you do not have a signed, approved day off request on file for that day. That is all it means. We make no judgement calls on whether it was a good reason to be off or not. We do not require a doctor's note. If you request a day off and we do not approve it, and you tell us you are going to take it off anyway, then it counts as one of your six unplanned absences. It is not a firing offense, as long as you have fewer than six of them. This really surprises a lot of people. They see it as me allowing insubordination. We do not see it that way at all.
We highly prize individuals and trust them to act like adults. When they submit a form requesting a day off, we do not even ask why they will be off. The only test is the needs of the business. If I can grant the day off and not affect service to our clients, we will approve it. If we cannot, we will not approve it. If the cleaner REALLY needs that day off such due to a major life event, they can take it, but we will count it as one of their six unplanned days off. If they call off sick on a day that they were not approved to be off, I won't make them prove they were sick. I do not want to be in the position of judging what is important enough to miss work or not. The only thing I judge is, “Will this have a negative effect on the business?” If it will, it counts as one of your six days.
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This program would never work for some companies, but two of our core values are individual initiative and trust. With those values, I need to trust my people to make decisions of whether they need to be at home or at work on days when we need them at work. I accept that they will never be 100% available to me, thus 6 days every 6 months. Everyone is treated as an adult. I do not spend a lot of time listening to employees share details of their personal lives. We believe it is called a personal life for a reason.
So, do all your policies match your core values and culture? Do you know your core values? If not, you might want to consider the Foundations of Success Fast Track Program. This is the most comprehensive training program for cleaning business owners. It addresses every aspect of your business. With Foundations Fast Track, you can make sure that all the foundations of your business are consistent and reinforce each other, not a mishmash with nothing holding them together but hope and dreams.
You may be interested in our Foundations Fast Track class devoted specifically to Employee Training & Orientation. It contains 24 incredibly valuable downloads, including Tom Stewart's Employee Manual. Click the play button on the image below for a FREE PREVIEW of Liz Trotter's presentation for this class.
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Employee Training & Orientation- $149
Begin as you mean to continue. The first day a new employee spends with you sets the tone for the entire working relationship. And while you (a business owner) are concerned about getting that new person into place to bring in revenue, it's a mistake to skip or ignore an introduction to your company culture through a thorough orientation - and we're not talking about just filling out paperwork.
This class, delivered by American Maid founder/owner Liz Trotter, shows you how to organize the various segments of information a new employees needs on that very first day with your company: from your mission statement and core values to how those connect with the reasons behind your cleaning procedure to how those same core values tell you what answer to give customers when they ask questions.
- Orientation Programs
- Training the Trainer
- Technician Training Systems
- Class Video (duration 39:40)
- Class PPT Slides
- Orientation: AMCLLC (Liz Trotter's) Mission Statement and Core Values (aka Game Plan, Strategy, and Strength)
- Orientation: AMCLLC Job Positions, Pay, and Promotion Opportunities (aka League Structure and Growth Ladder)
- Orientation: AMCLLC Trainee Orientation Checklist (aka Rookie Orientation Checklist)
- Orientation: AMCLLC Team Manual (policies)
- Orientation: AMCLLC Team Member Request Form (time off, injuries, etc)
- Orientation: CK (Tom Stewart's) Employee Manual - with attorney's notes
- Orientation: CK Uniform Policy
- Orientation: Employee Manual Template (editable)
- Training: AMCLLC Team Cleaner Job Description
- Training: AMCLLC Safety Program Handbook
- Training: AMCLLC Service Comparison Chart
- Training: AMCLLC Team Tips Cards
- Training: AMCLLC Team Member Information Sheet
- Training: AMCLLC Time Goal Tracker
- Training: AMCLLC Training Schedule
- Training: AMCLLC Training Workbook and Evaluation
- Training: MMS (Derek Christian's) Checklist of Supplies for 1st Day in the Field
- Training: MMS Floor Maintenance Guide
- Training: MMS Overview of Employee Training Procedure
- Training: MMS Tools & Instructions
- Training: MMS Training Checklist
- Training: MMS Training Tracker
This class (or business topic) was originally presented live as one piece of the comprehensive Foundations of Success program. Business coaches/consultants Derek Christian, Tom Stewart and Liz Trotter are now making all 22 classes of the program available through Foundations Fast Track. purchase the full program (all 22 classes at once) for only $2549!
Derek Christian has been involved in the cleaning industry for more than 20 years and is an owner or investor in several cleaning companies including My Maid Service Dayton and Real World Services Columbus, and now he works as a sales and marketing consultant for Castle Keepers.