Avoid the Legal Pitfalls of Management


Managers at all levels are held to a high standard of professional, ethical and legal behavior. Every day, these individuals make key decisions that affect the companies for which they work, its employees and its culture as a whole. As a manager, it is essential to understand and adhere to the ethical and legal obligations of your position to meet the expectations of all employees and to set an example of such behavior for others.

From your employees’ standpoint, managers and other company leaders are the fabric of your organization. Executives and compliance personnel make policies to reflect the legal and ethical standards workers are expected to measure up to. However, managers must apply, interpret and execute the policies and legal standards sensibly based on the situations employees encounter.

When hiring, promoting, implementing discipline or processing a termination, all managers must make these decisions based solely on the employee’s ability to perform the job. Avoid the common legal pitfalls such as:

  • Poor documentation
  • Inflated or inaccurate evaluations
  • Unfair or inconsistent behavior

The Manufacturer & Business Association’s Supervisory Skills Series can help you navigate these tricky legal waters. Also, make sure to consult with a member from your HR department with questions and problems. Stay focused on your goal of making the right decisions and getting the right employees in the right positions instead of tripping into a legal pitfall due to poor management.

Tracy Daggett, PHR is the manager of Professional Development Training Services at the Manufacturer & Business Association. Contact him at 814/833-3200, 800/815-2660 or