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20 Years of Faith, Honor and Gratitude

  On Valentine’s Day, 2022, the Achilles Group celebrates 20 years in service to business leaders across Houston. We understand that our mission to “Equip and Encourage Leaders to Make Smart People Decisions” is entirely dependent upon the collective strengths and work ethic of our people. And reaching a 20-year milestone is evidence that the Achilles culture of innovation, hard work and passion to make a difference is at the heart of our success. As owners and caretakers of the business Da...

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5 Strategies for Effective Organizational Communication

It’s no secret that great organizations cannot flourish without strong organizational communication. But what does that look like? Here are five strategies for effective organizational communication in the workplace. Create an Environment That Supports Open Communication.Whether it's formal, informal, upward, downward or horizontal communication, it's imperative to cultivate an environment where all team members feel free to express their ideas and share their concerns. Communication within your...

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Global Leadership Summit

A few of our team members attended the Global Leadership Summit at The Met last week, where they had the opportunity to learn more about leadership attributes from a variety of speakers. The theme of the event focused on how making mistakes, and persevering through those mistakes, helps create better leaders. Leadership is more than just a title - we all have the ability to lead, it's about finding where your leadership abilities lie.

Updated FMLA Forms 

An updated set of Family and Medical Leave Act (FLMA) forms for employers has been released by the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division. The only revision to these forms is an updated expiration date. The previous forms expired on August 31 of this year, but now, the updated forms will be valid through August 31, 2021.DOL forms are critical when it comes to ensuring that the FMLA's requirements are met. It is important to stay up-to-date on these forms.If you have any question...

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Effective Recruiting Is More Than Meets the Eye

Sometimes you can’t see a problem until someone from the outside points it out, and that’s particularly true in the recruiting process. What may initially be a good recruiting strategy for your company could also slow you down as the company gets larger. We wanted to provide you with an example that you might be seeing within your own organization. Meet fictional ABC Services to understand how we could help your Recruiting Effectiveness.“We always thought we were pretty good at finding the right...

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How Achilles Group Acts as Both Your Teammate and Coach

Fundamentally, leadership is all about getting others to follow the course you set with full competency and commitment. However, the challenge of a leader is that you’re often too busy to sit down and engage your team in a way that allows them to understand your goals and align under the same strategy, so it helps to speak to the experts!Strategic Alignment—the Achilles Way—begins with a disciplined approach to organizing priorities in a clear, concise way. Achilles Group’s HR Professionals can ...

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How We Set Your Business Up for Success

Simply put, leadership is communication, and it's Achilles Group’s passion to help your leadership communicate better both one-on-one and across your organization to preserve and build upon the best aspects of your business heritage. We understand that vision without accountability and discipline is just hopes and dreams, so we have a team with the knowledge and abilities to put your whole business in perspective and align all your strategies to achieve the results you desire.Strategy Alignment ...

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People Performance Drives Profitability

At Achilles Group we work hard to impact People Performance as a catalyst for profitability.We have worked with thousands of leaders and seen the good, the bad and at times the ugly impact of poor leadership.  And we are driven to influence every leader we encounter to learn what it takes to become an encouraging leader, to proactively impact People Performance and to drive profitability.Encouraging Leaders are those who earn their authority and then embrace, model and promote principles that ma...

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The #MeToo Movement

At Achilles Group, we are dedicated to designing and building a best in class HR Infrastructure both as your foundation for growth and as a firewall to mitigate employment related risks and protect against loss.  With the rise of the #MeToo Movement late last year, we watched as sexual misconduct allegations against several high-profile men like Kevin Spacey, Harvey Weinstein, and former “Today” anchor, Matt Lauer were brought to light. Revelations were not unique to the entertainment industry, ...

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Changes coming to the EEO-1 Report

As announced on August 29th, 2017 by the U.S. Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (or OIRA), the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (or EEOC) is implementing an immediate stay and reviewing of the effectiveness of the pay data collection components of the revised Equal Employer Information Report (as known as the EEO-1 report).Last year, the commission amended the EEO-1 report to require federal contractors and private employers with at least 100 employees to include pay and h...

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Controversial Overtime Rule Struck Down by District Court

A federal court judge in Texas has struck down a controversial overtime change to the Fair Labor Standards Act (or FLSA) put in place by the Department of Labor (DOL) during the Obama Administration. The rule, which was originally scheduled to go into effect last December, was designed to extend overtime pay eligibility for over 4 million workers, lifted the overtime salary exemption threshold from $455 per week to $913 per week. Any exemptions to this law are based on both workers’ salaries and...

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How Does Payroll Work in Times of Natural Disaster?

As a result of Hurricane Harvey and the subsequent flooding throughout Southeast Texas, many businesses that were forced to closed may be wondering how to handle payroll and PTO issues. Here are a few tips and guidelines to help clear up the confusion:Payroll: Exempt (or salaried) employees: the employer is required by law to pay full salaries for any week in which the employee worked at least a portion of the workweek. Therefore, you cannot dock exempt employees’ pay for days not worked due to ...

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5 Tips for Virtual Workforce Engagement

Two of the hot topics in business today—employee engagement and workplace flexibility—can often seem at odds in terms of the virtual workforce. As working from home, at client sites, or second locations has increased, this has led to a decrease in employee engagement; however, there’s more to it than mere distance. The number-one reason virtual employees are disengaged is the same reason why employees quit: their relationship with their supervisor.At Achilles Group, we understand that the value ...

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Recruiting Effectiveness at First Presbyterian

Recruiting the right candidate for your organization doesn’t always mean filling the position with someone similar to the person who you had in the role before. Instead, it should depend on the future direction of the company, so always remember to keep the big picture in mind. Character and experience are just as important as the required job skills in order to ensure you get the best fit to align with the company’s goals and vision.When I started working with First Presbyterian Church of Houst...

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Clear, Timely, Focused, Respectful, Feedback

 “But I’m just a soul whose intentions are good/Oh lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood.” The lyrics to that old blues song perfectly illustrate the importance of communicating your feedback in a clear, timely, focused and respectful manner. The goal is not to tear down your employees but to give them the gift of clarity and to help build them up into something greater. To do so, you must make sure the feedback covers something the employee can actually control and address directly. Be sur...

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How to Receive Feedback with Grace

Inviting feedback can be hard enough, but receiving it can be even harder. Any sort of criticism (even constructive) tends to bring out all of our insecurities and defensiveness, but truly great leaders resist this impulse and readily accept feedback with grace and an open mind. It can touch on sensitive areas, but it’s important not to take it too personally and to manage your emotions and reactions.  Keep your composure, focus on understanding their perspective and work to keep the channel ope...

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Employee Reflections by Jared Wondra

Is your company up to the task of winning the “battle” for top talent? Companies all across the world are looking for new, innovative, and cost-effective ways to attract talent to their organizations. Achilles Group is like no other organization when it comes to Recruiting Effectiveness! We strive in the beginning not only to help our clients find the best talent but also in the long term to coach and mentor hiring managers and other key players in their organizations to become more effective at...

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How We Make Recruiting Effectiveness a Key Part of Your Business

Every business owner knows how critical it is to attract, hire and keep good people, yet most don’t fully appreciate what it takes to become effective at recruiting. While outside recruiters, headhunters, and temps are often very valuable, they don’t always lend themselves to a deep understanding of your organization and don’t necessarily allow you to always discover and retain good people.However, over many years of working with business leaders, Achilles Group has developed a focused set of re...

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A Sweet Announcement from Achilles Group

On this Special Valentine’s Day, Achilles Group celebrates 16 years of service to our clients. We are very grateful for the opportunity to make a difference and for our talented group of people who make it all possible.  Kristen McGullion is one those amazing people, and she has provided us yet another reason for celebration.Kristen is one of our longest tenured colleagues and over the years she has contributed in almost every facet of our business.  We’ve watched her take on every challenge, gr...

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The Importance of Strategy Alignment

Leveraging the Right PrioritiesFundamentally, leadership is about getting others to go in the direction you set with full competency and commitment. The challenge is that you’re often too busy to sit down to agree upon that direction or to take the time to really lay out the strategies that truly focus on your business goals.It’s not that you don’t know your priorities, how to attack the market or solve other business challenges.  However, you probably don’t often collectively gather to collabor...

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