When you start your social media business and you begin to build your team and hire new talent, you will need an employee handbook. However, in these early stages of scaling a business, things are exciting and you are focused on all of the positive reasons why you’re hiring new people. And you will probably think you don’t need an employee handbook, until you do.
You see, the problem is, this is how many businesses think. It’s like the classic “pre-nup before the wedding” argument. When you’re all happy and in love, you would never think that your love would turn on you and you would never think you would have to protect yourself. But the moment you realize you do, that’s when you regret not having an agreement in place. Bad things can happen if that relationship sours. You need to protect yourself not only in love, but especially in business.
Employee handbooks are critical, and can save you a ridiculous amount of heartache in the long run. Consider these 4 important benefits of having an employee handbook for your business.
- Introduce Company Culture, Mission + Values. An employee handbook is one of the first documents your new hire should review and sign. Starting off on a positive note sets the stage for your entire relationship moving forward. Welcome your new employee by showing them that they are now part of the team, and get them excited about what that means exactly, in terms of culture and values.
- Set Expectations. An employee handbook sets expectations for the work environment. Employees get a clear understanding of what is expected of them as they take on the responsibility of their job and a representative of the business and the brand.
- Save HR Resources. Employee handbooks cover everything from conduct to compensation to vacation and personal time. Many of the questions that often get asked of HR can be answered in the employee handbook. What if you don’t have an HR person? Who does the responsibility of answering those questions fall on? Chances are it’s someone that you don’t want to have to pay to answer questions that can be answered quickly by a document.
- Avoid Lawsuits. When you have everything in writing, and all parties involved have signed on the dotted line, it gives you ground to stand on in case you need to fire or reprimand employees for violating the rules outlined in the handbook. This can also be your line of defense in an unemployment lawsuit.
There are a lot of reasons why companies don’t have employee handbooks, but it always comes down to that sense early on in a relationship that the person you are hiring is amazing and “they would never do you wrong so why do I need to protect myself?”. But employee handbooks aren’t just to cover yourself if you need a reason to fire someone. They set the stage for a positive work environment and provide valuable information that can be found quickly so you can move on with your day and focus on what matters: growing your business and servicing your clients.
For these reasons, we’ve included an Employee Handbook Template in our Launchest Resources. Customize the template to your own company culture and policies and start hiring and managing your team like a pro! Your employees will appreciate you for it, and your team will be stronger as a result.