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November 17, 2009


Employee Rights News You Can Use



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Date November 17, 2009

Issue #08



Are you "bulletproof" to the manager's documentation tricks? Part 2

The following are some steps I've used to help "bulletproof" myself with documentation. Some employers will harass, unjustly deny promotional opportunities, discriminate, demote or fire you. Keeping an accurate and chronological record (timeline) of what the employee has experienced may make the difference between keeping a job or looking for a job.

No employee is perfect, but neither is any employer. If I'm cursing at co-workers, have poor job performance; consistently late, insubordinate to management or violating other company policies then my termination may be justified. If my employer has appropriately and accurately documented my behavior then it will be in a good position to defend itself from lawsuits.

What if my performance is satisfactory and my boss has "bad faith" intent toward me? For example, because I wouldn't go out on a date with her. My documentation has to be rock solid. Our employers' document us and so should we document them. The following is why we must keep good employment records.

  • It's especially important when it comes to job evaluations, reprimands or warnings.
  • It gives an accurate description of what has happened over time. (the longer the better)
  • Good records allow me to be consistent on the issues when the boss tries to dispute them.
  • Solid documentation over a period of time shows the organization's pattern of practice in following or not following it's own policies and procedures.
  • It maintains a record of all correspondence, meetings and communications with supervisors, managers, owners, human resource and others.

From my personal experience nothing has helped protect and defend my basic employee rights more than learning the who, what, when, where and why of documenting my employers behavior. Most employees live in "At Will" employment states. That means your boss can fire you for any reason, no reason or even a bad reason. Our employers cannot terminate us for an ILLEGAL reason.

Learn more about "At Will" here;

Excellent verifiable record keeping helps to prove you have or are being treated differently than co-workers in similar or same positions. One of the most important areas of documentation many employees overlook is their personnel file kept in human resources. You might be surprised at what some employers will "slip" into your file without you knowing it!

That's why I always get a copy of my personnel file at least once a year. When "bulletproofing" my overall documentation here's what I look for in my personnel file;

  • results of my performance reviews or evaluations
  • my job description
  • any papers I have signed, including "AT Will" documents
  • info on company policies and procedures
  • any comments and disciplinary records from my supervisor or manager
  • records supporting my work product
  • any comments from other supervisors, managers, owners and people from other departments
  • any info that may be of a medical nature potentially affecting HIPAA, workers' compensation, ADA, etc.

Several years ago my employer changed my job description without any input or notice to me. Extra duties and job requirements were inserted that I knew nothing about. had I not requested a copy I could have been evaluated negatively for not performing them. This is another example of the games companies will play when they have "bad faith" intent.

Next time I'll focus on employee "bulletproofing" against inaccurate or false employer disciplinary documentation and understanding the difference between a personnel file and employee file.




Top Tips!


Are you or someone you know interested in a career as a teacher? Do you know the deadly resume mistakes most teaching job applicants make? My friend Adam Waxler has some powerful teacher resume tips.

Use this Powerful Teacher Resume Tip to make YOUR Teacher Resume STAND OUT!

Copyright © Adam Waxler

An effective teacher resume is absolutely essential in today's extremely competitive teaching job market.

In fact, your teacher resume may be the one thing that gets you the interview.

There is no question that teaching jobs are extremely difficult to secure these days. The fact is the baby boomers are not retiring in the numbers most experts thought (who can blame them…life is just too expensive) and many people are switching careers and going into teaching (who can blame them…it's a great job with great benefits).

However, this means there are more and more teachers looking for fewer and fewer available teaching jobs.

For these reasons it is not uncommon for schools to receive 500 -1000 applications for just one teaching position.

Unfortunately, this makes it extremely difficult to even get an interview for a teaching position.

Fortunately, there are many things that you can do to separate yourself form the other 1000 applicants and you should make sure to do them all.

This article, however, will focus on just one...your teacher resume. Actually, this article will focus on just one aspect of your teacher resume...your objective.

Every teacher resume should start out with an objective right at the top.

I know this may sound obvious to many, and many may argue they are doing this already.

However, most teachers are not taking full advantage of their teacher resume objective.

This one sentence, if done correctly, will give your teacher resume a huge edge over the competition.

The truth is I stopped including my own objective when I first started applying for teaching positions thinking it wasn't necessary as I thought all I was doing was just stating the obvious.

It was not until I got involved with teacher recruitment and started sitting on various teacher interview committees that I realized leaving my objective out of my teacher resume was a HUGE mistake.

You see...there are two major problems with most teacher resumes and I can show you how to overcome both of these obstacles with a powerfully written teacher resume objective.

The first major problem with most teacher resumes is that they do not immediately let the reader know what SPECIFIC position the applicant is applying for. What many people don't realize is that the teacher interview committee is not just interviewing for one position at one specific grade level. Those on the teacher interview committee are actually interviewing for many positions at many different grade levels.

If you don't include your objective in your teacher objective that clearly and specifically states the teaching position you are applying for...then you are making it more difficult on the teacher interview committee. They do not know if your resume is for a first grade teaching position or an 8th grade teaching position. This is a big mistake!

This goes hand in hand with the other major problem with most teacher resumes...they do nothing to STAND OUT.

This would be a big problem if there were only a handful of applicants, but when there are over 500 applicants it is a major concern. If your teacher resume does not stand out amongst the others how then can you expect to get a call for an interview?

When those on the teacher interview committee sit down to go through all the applications they may very likely be going through hundreds of teacher resumes at a time. Their initial goal is to divide the resumes into various piles. At least one of those piles will be the pile that never gets looked at again…the ones whose teacher resumes did nothing to stand out…the ones whose teacher resumes simply all blended into one another. Unfortunately, after a while almost all the teacher resumes start to do just that...blend in.

This is why it is imperative that you make your teacher resume stand out.


Again, with a well constructed teacher resume objective.

A focused objective grabs attention instantly and will make you stand out brilliantly, but only if you do it right.

However, most applicants that use an objective in their resume don't do it right...they simply state "Objective: Seeking an 8th grade social studies position"

While this is better than is not nearly enough.

Try this instead: "Objective: 8th Grade Social Studies Teacher - Seeking to interview for a position where ten years of teaching experience and a passion for education will add value to [insert school name]"

See the difference? The second example really stands out AND you personalized the resume by inserting the name of their school.

Also, notice how the above example subtly ASKS for the interview. So at the top of your next teacher resume, start it off with an "objective" that clearly states the teaching position you are applying for and one or two well-written sentences that speak about your specific skills pertaining to that teaching position.

Use this powerful tip to energize your teacher resume.


Are you still looking for a teaching job? Get the inside secrets on how to get a teacher interview an outright ACE it at



The Next Issue of Basic Employee Rights eNews!

Learn your employer's negative documentation tricks! Pt. 3



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Your Basic Employee Rights eNews is published the first week of the month, 12 weeks per year. From time to time we will publish special features that affect employees in the workplace.



Note: Any and all information provided within this Newsletter/Ezine is for educational and general information purposes only. It is NOT INTENDED as legal advice. Please review this specific disclaimer;


Written by Yancey Thomas Jr.


(c)copyright 2009


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