The Practical EmployerFrom the Archives: Santa’s Employee Handbook
If you’re looking for a good holiday gift for that special HR person in your life, I strongly recommend 'The North Pole Employee Handbook.'
While I’d like to believe that every post I’ve ever written is indelibly embossed on the brain of every person that’s ever read my blog, I understand that readers come and go, and not everyone reads or recalls every post. As a result, sometimes it makes sense to dive into the archives to revisit a timely (and timeless) post of yesteryear.
So today I bring you, all the way from Dec. 11, 2014, Even Santa needs an employee handbook.
The Christmas season is upon us, which means that the elves are hard at work deep inside the confines of the North Pole’s factories preparing gifts to load onto Santa’s sleight for his Yuletide trip around the globe. Pop culture—such as “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and “Elf”—portrays Santa’s workshop as a happy, jolly place, where the elves gleefully craft toys all hours of the day and night, without even a whisper of discontent.
“The North Pole Employee Handbook: A Guide to Policies, Rules, Regulations and Daily Operations for the Worker at North Pole Industries” was allegedly found in “the vast confines of a Newark warehouse used to store elf clothing for Christmas displays.” It appears that all is not candy and carols at the North Pole.
- Employees are called “cogs.”
- Humans are not discriminated against in employment, as long as they are nimble, quick, and speak in high-pitched voices.
- Cogs receive unpaid holidays for most of January, all of February – September, and half of October. With no other industry to speak of in the North Pole, however, other income-earning opportunities must be scarce.
- Human employees must wear fake elf ears “as a gesture of solidarity with” their “fellow employees.”
- Cogs must sign a non-competition agreement as a condition of employment. (I guess that job at Mattel is going to have to wait.)
- Discipline can include weeks of work without pay.
- Cogs receive the generous allotment of one five minute break and one 11½ minute lunch break for every 11 hours worked.