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7 Tips for Creating a Professional Employee Handbook




An employee handbook might seem like a small detail in the grand scheme of running a business, but it can have a major impact on your business’s inner workings. From processes and execution to employee confidence and consistency, a good handbook has the potential to change everything. 

Why Create an Employee Handbook?

As a small business owner, you have to be intentional about what you spend your time on – otherwise, you risk being pulled in a dozen different directions. 

So at first glance, it might be tempting to write-off an employee handbook as proverbial “busy work,” but we’d implore you to give it a second thought. Doing so could provide your growing company with a wealth of ongoing value.

As The Hartford explains, “An employee handbook is a compilation of all your company’s policies and protocols, as well as employees’ legal rights and obligations. Having an employee handbook makes it easy for you to communicate rules and responsibilities to employees, so there’s no question about what’s expected from them — or from you, as the small business owner.”

An employee handbook is an easy and convenient point of reference. It empowers your team and helps them address issues in real-time without having to involve other people and take them away from the work they’re doing. 

7 Tips for Better Employee Handbooks

If you’re going to go through the effort of creating a handbook, you need to ensure it’s useful. A poorly executed employee handbook can do more harm than good, inciting confusion and feeling overwhelmed. 

With that said, here are a few tips you may find helpful:

  • Make it Accessible

The problem with most employee handbooks is that they’re inaccessible. When an employee has a situation where they need the handbook, they don’t know where to find it. This causes the employee to either ignore it or send an email to HR (which hurts productivity and defeats the entire purpose of having a handbook in the first place).

In order to get the maximum value out of your handbook, you should invest in both digital and print copies. Digital copies can be stored on your company’s cloud drive or social intranet. Print copies can be printed on-demand and given to employees as part of their initial hiring package. (We recommend using spiral bound book printing to get the perfect blend of cost, durability, and looks.)

  • Keep it Engaging

A good employee handbook should be compelling enough to keep people engaged. You can do this through a combination of high-quality visuals, storytelling, and interactive elements (such as checklists).

  • Include the Basics

The beginning of the employee handbook should provide a one-page rundown of the company’s values, mission statement, and other basic elements like taglines and elevator pitch statements. Every employee should be required to memorize this page within the first month of being employed.

  • Address FAQs

An employee handbook should be more than an endless stream of policies and legal language. You want this to be a resource that employees can turn to in order to get answers to all common questions regarding processes and standard operating procedures. By centralizing your knowledge into a single resource, you cut down on the confusion people have with where to go. This trains them to visit the employee handbook first. Then, and only then, should they bring someone else into the issue or question they’re working through. 

  • Explain Feedback Loops

While a handbook can cut down on 75 to 90 percent of questions employees have, even the most thorough resource can’t solve every problem. However, a good employee handbook can provide information on the proper feedback loops and chains of command so that employees know where to go with their inquiries. 

  • Include Disclaimers

Finally, any good employee handbook must include disclaimers and other caveats pertaining to employment law and company policies. (This is as much about educating employees as it is about protecting yourself. Should an issue arise, the fact that you have well-documented disclaimers will show a good faith effort to educate.)

Consider including disclaimers as they relate to anti-discrimination and anti-harassment laws, family and medical leave policies, equal opportunity policies, etc. 

  • Well-Organized

An employee handbook is not something that one of your team members is going to read from cover to cover – it’s a resource. When it comes to designing your handbook, be sure to include a clear table of contents and a reference section. This empowers employees to find what they’re looking for in a matter of seconds. 

Empower Your Team to Succeed

An employee handbook won’t solve all of your problems or replace the need for training and development, but it does provide a centralized resource that empowers your team to be more productive. If you haven’t already, now’s the time to create a handbook for your team!

The idea of Bigtime Daily landed this engineer cum journalist from a multi-national company to the digital avenue. Matthew brought life to this idea and rendered all that was necessary to create an interactive and attractive platform for the readers. Apart from managing the platform, he also contributes his expertise in business niche.

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The Ultimate Guide to the Essential Social Skills in Business




Effective communication and strong relationships are essential for success in the workplace. One factor that can greatly influence these qualities is emotional intelligence, often abbreviated as EQ. EQ refers to the ability to identify, understand, and manage one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. Research has shown that individuals with high levels of EQ are better equipped to handle stress, communicate effectively, and work collaboratively with others (Chamorro-Premuzic & Sanger, 2016).

Research has consistently shown that emotional intelligence (EQ) is an important predictor of job performance and success in the workplace. EQ is comprised of a set of skills that allow individuals to recognize, understand, and regulate their own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. In addition, individuals with high EQ are better able to communicate effectively, build relationships, and navigate complex social situations. As a result, they are often viewed as effective leaders and collaborators, and are more likely to achieve their personal and professional goals.

In fact, a number of studies have demonstrated the significant impact that EQ has on job performance and success. For example, one study of 85 upper-level managers found that those with higher EQ scores were rated as more effective leaders by their subordinates (Law, Wong, & Song, 2004). Another study of 151 employees found that those with higher EQ were more likely to be promoted within their organization over a five-year period (Carmeli, Brueller, & Dutton, 2009). These findings highlight the importance of EQ in the workplace and suggest that developing these skills can lead to significant benefits for both individuals and organizations.

According to a study conducted by TalentSmart, a leading provider of EQ assessments, EQ is responsible for 58% of success in all job types (Bradberry & Greaves, 2009). In contrast, IQ only accounts for about 4% of success in the workplace. This suggests that EQ is a crucial skill set for individuals in any professional field. Fortunately, EQ is a skill that can be developed and honed over time with practice and awareness.

There are several key components of EQ that are particularly important for success in the workplace. These include: 

Self-Regulation: This refers to your capacity to recognize and control your emotions. Sometimes treating them when they arise may be necessary. Understanding how to manage your anger is essential. However, it can also cover how to control the feelings you’ll experience.

Self-Awareness: This implies recognizing and understanding your own feelings. Do noisy places make you nervous? Do other people talking over you make you angry? Knowing these truths about yourself shows that you are working on your self-awareness. Being conscious of yourself is necessary for this phase, which can be more complex than it sounds.

Socialization: This category focuses on your capacity to manage social interactions and direct relationships. It doesn’t entail dominating others but knowing how to work with others to achieve your goals. This could entail presenting your ideas to coworkers, leading a team, or resolving a personal disagreement.

Motivation: Strong motivators include external forces like money, status, or suffering. Internal motivation, however, plays a significant role in Goleman’s concept. By doing so, you demonstrate your ability to control your cause and initiate or continue initiatives of your own volition rather than in response to external demands.

Empathy: It’s equally critical to be sensitive to others’ feelings. This may entail learning to identify different emotional states in individuals — for example, can you tell the difference between someone at ease and someone anxious? — but it also requires comprehension of how other people may react to their current situation. Empathy is one of the essential traits in business and business leadership.

A thought leader in this space, Michael Ventura has built a career advising organizations on the importance of emotional intelligence in the workplace. In his book, Applied Empathy, Ventura highlights the value of empathy in business and provides strategies for developing and applying this skill set. With two decades of experience as a leader, facilitator, and educator, Ventura’s work has made impact in with prestigious institutions such as Princeton University and the United Nations as well as corporate clients such as Google and Nike.

Through his work, Ventura advises leaders to focus on the development of EQ in order to help individuals improve their communication, collaboration, and leadership skills, ultimately leading to greater success in the workplace. Experts like Ventura continue to support the growing body of research on the value of EQ in business, and the evidence that organizations who invest in the EQ of their teams help to create a more empathetic and successful professional environment.

And it’s worth noting that EQ isn’t just important for individual success in the workplace, but also for overall organizational success. A study by the Center for Creative Leadership found that EQ was a better predictor of success than IQ or technical skills in the workplace, and that teams with higher levels of EQ tend to be more effective and productive (Boyatzis, Goleman, & Rhee, 1999). By cultivating a culture of empathy and emotional intelligence, organizations can improve their overall performance and create a more positive work environment for their employees.

In conclusion, emotional intelligence is a crucial component of success in the workplace, and individuals and organizations alike should prioritize the development of these skills. The ones that do not only develop a leading edge in their category, but also become a meaningful place to work for their teams. And in today’s rapidly changing talent landscape, the retention of highly capable, emotionally intelligent leaders is one of the greatest keys to unlocking success.


Boyatzis, R. E., Goleman, D., & Rhee, K. S. (1999). Clustering competence in emotional intelligence: Insights from the emotional competence inventory (ECI). In R. Bar-On & J. D. A. Parker (Eds.), Handbook of emotional intelligence (pp. 343-362). Jossey-Bass.

Bradberry, T., & Greaves, J. (2009). Emotional intelligence 2.0. TalentSmart.

Chamorro-Premuzic, T., & Sanger, M. N. (2016). Does employee happiness matter? Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance, 3(2), 168-191.

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