Woodstock Area Job Bank

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Few things get me down more in my work than when I hear from a worker who didn’t get paid for their work. This last week I heard from one hard-working young man who had been hired by a local family to do some garden cleanup. He was on the job for two weekends and was paid for the first but is still waiting on the second installment. When he approached his employer about it he was told that the work wasn’t done properly, he worked too many hours and his hourly rate was too high. The employer then offered to give him a gift card to a local store so they could “call it even.”
It all sounded pretty fishy to me.

I am not going to take sides in the matter but I did point that had they done some planning ahead of time this might have been avoided. Of course hindsight is 20/20 but perhaps we can all learn something from this. Before you get to work (or before you hire someone) sit down with them and clearly outline the expectations for the job. Just because you might consider it “casual labor” doesn’t mean that it is any less important to have a full understanding of what will happen.

Consider the following before work begins…

1) Identify the work that needs to be done (Be very specific here)
2) What is the hourly/job wage?
3) Is there an expectation of how long this job should take?
4) What time should the job start and end?
5) Agree on how to reach one another should plans change
6) Establish “check points” during the day to evaluate how things are going.
7) If you are the employer, ask for and check references on the worker
8) If you are the worker, consider the above information carefully and be sure to do what you say you are going to do. If you want to do more that what’s agreed upon, be sure to check with your employer first. You might not get paid for the extra work.

Granted, there are jerks out there who won’t play by the rules but for the most part if expectations are clear on both sides, how can you go wrong?

Keep up the good work and have a great weekend!

Elizabeth Craib

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