When you talk to business owners about what make their business successful, they often say their employees are their number one assets. That’s certainly true for the Columbus small business I co-own with my father, Wolf’s Ridge Brewing. We want to keep our employees happy, and for us, part of how we do that is by offering paid family and medical leave via a short-term disability policy. But paid leave isn’t just about treating our employees well – it’s also boosted our bottom line by increasing employee retention and morale.
Family Medical Leave
Small Business Majority released a scientific opinion poll that found the majority of small businesses support publicly-administered paid family and medical leave insurance programs, which would allow employees to receive partial income when they need to take time off to recover from a serious illness or care for a new child or sick family member.
I’m a small business owner, and I’m also a new dad. These identities give me insight into a topic that's been front and center lately: paid family and medical leave. It’s considered common sense that new parents are in favor of paid leave, as we want to spend time with our children and understand that others parents do as well. But what most people don’t realize is that a majority of small business owners support paid leave as well. I have nine employees on my team, and it’s important for me to maintain a strong workforce.
Many small businesses can’t afford an HR department, which means that benefits – like health insurance, paid leave and retirement – can be difficult and costly to administer. But employee turnover is expensive as well, costing an employer approximately 75 to 150 percent of an employee’s salary. Benefits can be key to reducing employee turnover, increasing employee productivity and ultimately boosting businesses’ bottom lines.
Many small business owners think of their employees as family, and they believe in taking care of their employees in order to retain a happy and loyal workforce and to attract top talent. They also know it’s important for their employees to be able to balance their work and family responsibilities. New scientific polling shows the majority of small businesses in Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi and New Mexico offer benefits like paid leave and provide family-friendly policies for their employees.
Signed into law on Feb. 5, 1993, the Family Medical Leave Act allows eligible employees of covered employers to take a limited amount of unpaid, job-protected leave for certain family and medical reasons, and have their benefits maintained. Twenty years later, scientific opinion polling has found small businesses strongly support the decades-old law.
Small business owners have been working tirelessly to pull the economy back from the brink of the Great Recession. The long hours and commitment they put into their businesses is rivaled only by their employees, whose hard work is crucial to the success of the business. That’s why small business owners feel it makes good business sense to take care of their employees, as it’s crucial they retain a loyal, talented workforce.
Small business owners in the Empire State have been working tirelessly to pull the state’s economy back from the brink of the Great Recession. The long hours and commitment they put into their businesses are rivaled only by their employees, whose hard work is crucial to the success of the business. That’s why New York small business owners feel it makes good business sense to take care of their employees, as it’s crucial they retain a loyal, talented workforce.
Scientific opinion polling shows small business owners support implementing laws that would allow employees to earn paid sick days to use when they or an immediate family member is sick, and the majority also offer a variety of benefits to their employees.
There are many complex policy issues that have a major impact on the small business community. Each week, we’re going to help break one of those issues down so small business owners can stay in the know and remain aware of their stake in these national issues. This week’s Issue Q&A is on family medical leave.