Employee Meetings?

Who has them? are they mandatory, if so do you pay for attendance time?
what are the topics you address? I will be implementing them. just wanted to get an idea of the pitfalls or suggestions to cover or avoid. I do not want to hold employee B!+ch sessions.

Thanks in advance for any comments.

I have an employee meeting twice a year, one paid and one not paid. The first is before our busy season kicks in. Its paid for and meant to introduce everyone, explain store policies & procedures, discuss work flow, escalation, and answer any operational questions. The second, is not paid time, but free food and drinks. Its our end of season Employee Appreciation Party. Self-explanatory. Other than that, I see no need for ‘meetings,’ where the information and answers can be provided by day to day supervision.

Anytime you require employees to be at work, meetings or not, you must pay them.

Fact Sheet #22: Hours Worked Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)

This fact sheet provides general information concerning what constitutes compensable time under the FLSA. The Act requires that employees must receive at least the minimum wage and may not be employed for more than 40 hours in a week without receiving at least one and one-half times their regular rates of pay for the overtime hours. The amount employees should receive cannot be determined without knowing the number of hours worked.

Definition of “Employ”

By statutory definition the term “employ” includes “to suffer or permit to work.” The workweek ordinarily includes all time during which an employee is necessarily required to be on the employer’s premises, on duty or at a prescribed work place. “Workday”, in general, means the period between the time on any particular day when such employee commences his/her “principal activity” and the time on that day at which he/she ceases such principal activity or activities. The workday may therefore be longer than the employee’s scheduled shift, hours, tour of duty, or production line time.

Application of Principles

Employees “Suffered or Permitted” to work: Work not requested but suffered or permitted to be performed is work time that must be paid for by the employer. For example, an employee may voluntarily continue to work at the end of the shift to finish an assigned task or to correct errors. The reason is immaterial. The hours are work time and are compensable.

Waiting Time: Whether waiting time is hours worked under the Act depends upon the particular circumstances. Generally, the facts may show that the employee was engaged to wait (which is work time) or the facts may show that the employee was waiting to be engaged (which is not work time). For example, a secretary who reads a book while waiting for dictation or a fireman who plays checkers while waiting for an alarm is working during such periods of inactivity. These employees have been “engaged to wait.”

On-Call Time: An employee who is required to remain on call on the employer’s premises is working while “on call.” An employee who is required to remain on call at home, or who is allowed to leave a message where he/she can be reached, is not working (in most cases) while on call. Additional constraints on the employee’s freedom could require this time to be compensated.

Rest and Meal Periods: Rest periods of short duration, usually 20 minutes or less, are common in industry (and promote the efficiency of the employee) and are customarily paid for as working time. These short periods must be counted as hours worked. Unauthorized extensions of authorized work breaks need not be counted as hours worked when the employer has expressly and unambiguously communicated to the employee that the authorized break may only last for a specific length of time, that any extension of the break is contrary to the employer’s rules, and any extension of the break will be punished. Bona fide meal periods (typically 30 minutes or more) generally need not be compensated as work time. The employee must be completely relieved from duty for the purpose of eating regular meals. The employee is not relieved if he/she is required to perform any duties, whether active or inactive, while eating.

[size=5]Lectures, Meetings and Training Programs: Attendance at lectures, meetings, training programs and similar activities need not be counted as working time only if four criteria are met, namely: it is outside normal hours, it is voluntary, not job related, and no other work is concurrently performed.[/size]

29 CFR 785.7
http://www.dol.gov/dol/allcfr/ESA/TITLE … R785.7.htm

[size=5]The workweek ordinarily includes ``all the time during which an employee is necessarily required to be on the employer’s premises, on duty or at a prescribed work place’'. [/size]

But hey, don’t trust me or the links from the DOL… After all, “I’m just a pizza driver”. Consult a lawyer before trusting complicated legal advice from a pizza discussion board. :roll:

We have manager meetings (all key holders) 3-4 times a year. Generally at a breakfast spot. We meet at 9AM and cover what I am looking for in the coming season and who is responsible for what (I pay extra for taking on certain responsibilities) The meetings last an hour. I buy breakfast and yes, they get paid for being there.

Tiresome as Gregster is, he is right about this. If you ask for attendance, you pay for it. Period. It is money well spent.

On the other hand, we do not pay for attending the annual employee party. It is not work and not required. We generally arrange with a local outfitter to take everyone rafting. I pay for it. Employees may bring a guest but they kick in $20 for the guest which covers the guest lunch. I still pay for the rafting.

It’s been a while since I was an employee, let alone a restaurant employee BUT, for your day-to-day help, I think you are much better off having an alley-ralley prior to each (or at least the busiest) shifts. When I waited tables and bartended, the managers would always gather us prior to the shift to go over specials, add-on contests for the night, a tasting, and usually one key point to be made. Remember, most of your employees don’t care that much about your business. You have to 1. Keep it short and/or 2. Give them a reason to care.

I’ve been to 4 hour and 8 hour meetings for restaurants and corporations. I can’t remember a single topic. But I do remember the basics of pre-bussing from an alley ralley when I was 16 years old. I also remember that Chicken Spiedeni is “tender chunks of marinated chicken rolled up onto a skewer like a shish-ka-bob, lightly coated in modiga (italian bread crumbs), grilled, and then topped with…” well you get the point. I haven’t worked at that place in 20 years.

Just something to chew on before you spend countless hours preparing your powerpoint presentation for deaf ears…

Good points. thank you keep them coming.

lol… i have no intention of a pwerpoint presentaion…but i can picture the eyeballs painted on the eyelids.

I am intendding this 2b a short 45mn -1hr long once a month to go over upcomming promos new coupons and expectations for cross training and give staff a chance to give feed back on what they see from their perspective in the WEEDS. We are a dine in (48 seats small) with del/co.
Most of our help is part time and not everyone gets a chance to work together I Would like to provide some of the better well organized seasoned staff an opportunity to share some of their pointers to the new and developing members.


Depending on your staff, you may have a hard time having those meetings that often.

I’m with pcuezze, I would rather hit the points relevant to the time on a shift-by-shift basis rather than throwing them into an information overload once a month.