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Proactive HR

HR mistakes: hasty hiring

Small business owners juggle many tasks. Drop the ball and it can turn into a disaster—especially when dealing with HR. Over the next three weeks, we’ll break down the six most common human resource mistakes and how to avoid them. (Pro tip: most are preventable!)


Hiring the wrong person is expensive and affects employee morale. If you’ve ever hired the wrong person, you’re not alone. According to a CareerBuilder survey, 75 percent of employers said they’ve made the same mistake.

Avoid turnover by sticking to a clear, consistent process. This means posting an accurate job description (including qualifications, job duties, etc) and involving the team in the hiring process. It’s important you hire a qualified candidate who fits your company culture.

HR Misclassifications

The IRS is strict with how businesses classify employees, and the mistake can cost thousands in penalties.

To determine an employee’s classification, look at their job duties. Below are some bullet points that can be a good place to start. Visit for further assistance.

  • Independent Contractors
    • No tax withholding
    • Typically also work for other entities
    • Provide their own equipment
    • Set their own hours
    • Not directed on a daily basis by the company
    • Numerous other factors
  • Overtime-Exempt Employees:
    • Tax withholding
    • Must meet specific overtime exemption requirements
    • Salary wage
    • No overtime pay required
    • Pay can be reduced only under certain circumstances
  • Nonexempt Employees
    • Tax withholding
    • Hourly wage
    • Overtime pay
    • Paid for actual time worked
    • Hours must be accurately tracked

Inspiration for this post comes from “HR Keys to Business Success” by Melisa Morrison published in the December 2022 issue of Creative Retailer. Morrison has over 30 years of experience in Human Resources and is a former quilt shop owner. Stay tuned next week for more on employee training and the company handbook.

If you’re looking for more information to guide you in owning a retail business, subscribe to Creative Retailer today. Already a subscriber? No worries—join our Facebook group for insights and dialogue from industry specialists like you. And don’t forget, you can always purchase single issues if you prefer that instead.

If you still can’t get enough, register for the Creative Retailer LIVE Spring 2023 event May 2-4 in Pawhuska, Oklahoma for opportunities to learn from peers as well as network with industry professionals.

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Livestreaming: Part Two


To continue our series on livestreaming, this week we’ll cover how to structure your livestream as well as ideas on what to livestream about.

How to Structure

Livestreaming is much like organizing a dinner party; the atmosphere changes depending how many people show up!

If one person shows up, the livestream will feel more like a meeting. If many attend it can turn into a classroom. Or, if it’s your most devoted followers, it will feel more like an intimate gathering.

Plan for one hour to get the best engagement, and be sure to plan accordingly. For instance, if you have a 30 minute interview scheduled, include 15 minutes of talking points prepared before and after the interview.

When you go lives, use the first few minutes to chat with your viewers so you can get used to the speed of comments coming in. If there aren’t any comments, run through an outline of what the livestream will entail. You don’t want to jump into things too quickly as you’ll likely have to repeat yourself as more attendees join.

Ways to Use Livestreaming

When it comes to livestreaming, there are many ideas! Check out this list for ideas and tips:

  • Launch a new product: This is a great option for shoppers interested in a first look of your product.
  • Q&A: Be prepared for down time in this one! Have stories or talking points on hand for when questions are slow coming in.
  • Interview: This is a great option if you’re uncomfortable being on camera the entire time. Plus you’ll get a variety of styles and personality types.
  • Teach a new skill: Publisher Heidi Kaisand’s quilt shop, Hens and Chicks Studio, goes live every Tuesday afternoon to show a new project or technique.
  • Chat and craft: Tik Tok-ers do this best. Set up your camera to focus on what you’re making. If you like to talk while you craft, then this is the best option for you.
  • Go behind the scenes: This is the best for promoting events. Show people how the sausage is made when decorating your shop or making treats.

Next week we’ll cover best practices, promotion, and livestreaming options. Inspiration for this post came from “Connect Through Livestreaming” by Sommer Leigh published in the December 2021 issue of American Quilt Retailer.

Even though it’s two months away, it’s not too early to register for AQR Academy: The Buzz – Spring Fling held virtually on April 7 from 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Door prizes are available and the day will be packed with product videos! Don’t worry if you can’t make it, but still be sure to register to get access to the recording after the event.

If you’re looking for more information to guide you in owning a retail business, subscribe to American Quilt Retailer today. Already a subscriber? No worries—join our Facebook group for insights and dialogue from industry specialists like you. And don’t forget, you can always purchase single issues if you prefer that instead.