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Is hiring friends and family a good idea? You tell us

Is hiring friends and family a good idea? You tell us

By Paul Nelson | Posted - Oct. 29, 2010 at 5:30 a.m.



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SALT LAKE CITY -- Hiring a friend or family member may not be for everyone, but contractor Bernell Lancaster says hiring his sons has worked very well for him.

"I think that it has offered a lot of flexibility for me," he says.

Lancaster says there are clear advantages to hiring loved ones.

"You have a reliable work force," he says. "You don't hire someone and train them and they end up working for someone else."

Plus, Lancaster says he gets to train them exactly the way he wants. By the time they finished high school, his sons were able to do pretty much all the work he needed them to do.

Still, he admits it's a tricky balance between work and home life because he may impose more on his family more than other employees.

"I would always expect them to be available around the clock," Lancaster says.

He has a strategy to keep his kids happy while in his employ: "I try to pay them at least as well or better than they could make working for someone else so they don't feel like I'm taking advantage of them."

Lancaster has heard the same horror stories about the boss' kid that the rest of us have; some of his colleagues have told stories about how the boss' child doesn't work as hard or flaunted the fact that they're one generation away from owning the company.

USA Today reports any employer who plans to hire a friend or family member should be open about the nepotism, and they shouldn't put loved ones in a position they're not equipped to handle.

E-mail: pnelson@ksl.com

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