Jonathan.Segal

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Jonathan A. Segal is a partner at Duane Morris LLP in the Employment, Labor, Benefits and Immigration Practice Group . He is also the managing principal of the Duane Morris Institute . The Duane Morris Institute provides training for human resource professionals, in house counsel, benefits administrators and managers at Duane Morris, at client sites and by way of webinar on myriad employment, labor, benefits and immigration matters. Read Jonathan's blog at the Duane Morris Institute or follow him on Twitter @Jonathan_HR_Law .

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Jonathan Segal

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8 years 2 weeks

Articles by Jonathan Segal

Many employers have rules that prohibit employees from returning to work while they are not on duty.  These rules are designed to keep order but they also have the effect of limiting employee access to engage in union activity while off duty.

The NLRB has long held that a rule barring off-duty employees access to the workplace is valid only if:

August 1, 2012
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From Shakespeare's Hamlet 1602:

Heaven and earth,
Must I remember? Why, she would hang on him
As if increase of appetite had grown
By what it fed on, and yet, within a month—
Let me not think on't—Frailty, thy name is woman!—

Hamlet is angry at his mother for marrying shortly after his father's death.  He sees her as weak.  He generalizes the weakness he sees in his mother to women generally.

No progressive manager would say a sexist comment like that today. Actually, they might, just when they think they are being progressive!

July 3, 2012

In 1969, Zager and Evans sang “In the Year 2525.”  If you are smiling, you too probably have looked in a mirror and asked: how did that happen? 

Did you ever wonder what the employment world will look like in 2525?  Perhaps the following:

June 19, 2012

Social media is no longer new. It is mainstream. To avoid social media today is like avoiding e-mail 15 years ago.

For employers, social media creates risks and rewards. This article discusses how to maximize the rewards and minimize the risks.

Recruiting

Despite the substantial benefits to having a diverse workforce, employers need to be careful about how they increase diversity or they may back into a reverse discrimination claim.

News Updates
June 14, 2012

I was out of town, more than a thousand miles from my home town, Philadelphia, where I had lunch with some people I had never met. They could not have been nicer and we talked about many things including where we grew up and where we live now.  Being the worldly person I am, I mentioned that I live outside of Philadelphia, about 10 minutes from where I grew up. 

June 5, 2012

We all know that powerful women face Catch-22s.  When Donald Trump exercises control, he is in control. When Martha Stewart exercises control, she is controlling.  Same behaviors; different labels.

A lot has been written about these Catch-22s.  Less has been written on how women with power can handle them.

Here are three of the many Catch-22s women with power face and my suggestions for how to navigate them.

1. Ice Queen

May 15, 2012

An important customer, client, colleague or business partner asks an executive if her son can intern with your company for the summer.  Don’t worry about the money, she says.  My son is only looking for the experience.

As we approach the summer, expect more of these requests.  I personally have received quite a few already!

Sounds like a classic “win-win.”  The intern learns something and you strengthen an important relationship at no cost. So, the executive says “of course.”  Not so fast, please!

April 23, 2012

Sexism is more than illegal. It is immoral and bad business.

There is more than a little bit of sexism in the roles portrayed in Mad Men.  So why are so many of us crazy about the show, even though we deplore the sexism that is part of it?

Of course, it is a TV show and not real life. And, the characters are not only psychologically interesting but also physically attractive.

March 23, 2012

I begin this cautionary blog with a story.  After the story, you’ll understand why I began the blog as I have.

I wrote an article on holiday parties for Business Week. I discussed the risks, including too much alcohol consumption and sexual harassment.  Of course, the two often are connected.

Well, the article included a little sarcasm.  Perhaps a little more than a little.  So it was tweeted pretty heavily.

February 27, 2012
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It is 9 am.  The secretary reports to her desk.  Waiting for her is a sealed card.
 
The secretary opens the envelope and it is a Valentine's card from her manager.  Having undergone sensitivity training, the manager signs it "fondly" as opposed to "lovingly."
 
The employee is creeped out and goes to HR.  HR talks with the manager based on a script we had prepared together.
 
HR asks the manager if he knows why the card is inappropriate.  He responds "no."
 
February 14, 2012

The holidays are a wonderful time to share good feelings and sometimes that includes gifts.  But you don’t want your seasonal gift to result in a January gift for plaintiffs’ lawyers.

Now is a good time to look at your policies on giving and receiving gifts and remind employees of their application to the holiday season.  Here are some suggestions:

December 8, 2011
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In Greek mythology, Sisyphus was a king punished by being compelled to roll an immense boulder up a hill, only to watch it roll back down.  No matter what he did, Sisyphus could not get to the top of the hill.

We can all feel Sisyphus’ pain as HR and other executives.  We are constantly rolling up against regulatory boulders, plaintiffs’ lawyers and labor unions marketed by the NLRB.

But Sisyphus had it easy in one respect.  He did not have to worry about the FLSA.

We are in the middle of a wage and hour revolution.  More specifically:

November 9, 2011

There has been an astronomic increase in employment litigation. The result is that there is almost an apoplectic fear of litigation. Indeed, because the cost of litigation can be so high, sometimes we try to avoid risk at all cost.

But we cannot avoid risk. It is not a question of risk avoidance, but rather risk selection.

In my experience, here are the top three mistakes that are sometimes made in managing risk and can result in buying one risk to avoid another.

October 5, 2011

This blog is also posted on the Duane Morris Institute blog. Click here to read more from Jonathan.

Recently, your company has completed a large acquisition. Working more than 70 hours per week for almost 4 months, Doug was the acquisition’s point person.

September 8, 2011