The following are seven useful recommendations to help you prevent and resolve conflicts that could emerge within your organization.
Adopt and promote a prevention and reparation policy against harassment.
- Create a prevention policy involving each level of the organization: management, employees and union representatives. For further assistance, feel free to consult the sample policies found on this website.
- Make sure information about the new policy is widely distributed, that all employees know the policy and encourage everyone to make it their own.
- Put a system in place to record all acts of violence by creating, for example, an Event Report Form.
- Set up procedures to handle complaints impartially, confidentially and quickly. These should include measures to prevent any recurrence of harassment and other types of workplace violence. It is critical to ensure that the victim feels safe against retaliation and has the right, if needed, to be represented when interviewed by an independent and qualified investigator. Keep in mind that, in this case, lodging a formal complaint is not always the best solution since it often involves lengthy delays.
- And finally, establish measures to support the victims and the alleged perpetrators.
Establish clear codes of conduct.
- Define and communicate a clear code of conduct like ‘Zero-tolerance’ with respect to moral harassment and other types of workplace violence.
- Make sure all employees know your organization’s code of conduct. These measures should reflect your organization’s commitment to preventing and responding to external acts of violence.
- Try to reduce and even eliminate behaviour that contravenes your code of conduct by exercising dissuasion and enforcing sanctions.
Organize awareness and training sessions.
- Take time to organize and provide access to awareness and training sessions on the prevention of workplace violence.
- Open the necessary lines of communication to achieve your prevention objectives.
Do not allow conflicts to escalate into harassment or acts of violence.
- Monitor the training of work teams. Working in teams highlights interpersonal relations and may give rise to some situations that could cause tension among people.
- Deal with conflicts swiftly, and from the moment they begin. Harassment and violence stem from unresolved conflicts that fester. They can degenerate and turn the workplace into a hostile environment and create negative occurrences that are violent and costly.
Set up effective lines of communication.
- Open effective lines of communication, because aggressors thrive on the silence of victims and witnesses. Communication is a key factor in the well-being of employees.
- Promote communication and regular meetings of your work teams. Strong lines of communication will not only rally employees against violence, they also reduce the risk of workplace violence by defusing tensions and clarifying situations and misunderstandings.
Pay special attention to the quality of relationships among members of a work team.
- Ensure that work is meaningful for each worker.
- Manage work teams to help prevent and resolve violent situations.
Encourage the acceptance of individual differences.
- Communicate the idea that the strength of a team resides in individual differences (We need each other to make a winning team. The “differences” in each team member makes the strength of the team and enhances the team’s performance.)
- Where possible, plan social or training activities that help team members get to know each other and discover each other’s strengths and weaknesses, from a standpoint of openness to such differences and of acceptance of each team member’s willingness to improve interpersonal relations.
via Basic recommendations for preventing violence in the workplace.
It takes personal confidence to become a successful supervisor. Building that level of personal confidence requires learning supervisory skills. A supervisor’s job is to establish goals and lead a team of people to achieve them. Leadership requires stepping out in front with new, creative ideas that save money, increase productivity and establish credibility and respect from employees.
via Define Supervisory Skills | Chron.com.
It is unlawful to harass a person (an applicant or employee) because of that person’s sex. Harassment can include “sexual harassment” or unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature.
Harassment does not have to be of a sexual nature, however, and can include offensive remarks about a person’s sex. For example, it is illegal to harass a woman by making offensive comments about women in general.
Both victim and the harasser can be either a woman or a man, and the victim and harasser can be the same sex.
Although the law doesn’t prohibit simple teasing, offhand comments, or isolated incidents that are not very serious, harassment is illegal when it is so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work environment or when it results in an adverse employment decision (such as the victim being fired or demoted).
The harasser can be the victim’s supervisor, a supervisor in another area, a co-worker, or someone who is not an employee of the employer, such as a client or customer.
via Sexual Harassment.
The workplace environment affects how the employees perform and feel about their jobs. A motivating workplace encourages employees to work harder, which allows them to advance and succeed while your business gets ahead. The employees may also be more satisfied with their jobs when the environment motivates them at the office. Money often comes to mind as a motivating factor for employees, but other strategies also work to encourage improved work performance from all staff members.
- Step 1 – Write the policies, procedures and expectations for the office in a handbook for all employees. The written manual teaches employees what you want from them so they have a framework for behavior in the office. Knowing what is expected helps motivate employees because they know how to follow company standards to succeed.
- Step 2 – Implement company policies universally so all employees are treated equally and held to the same standards. This creates a sense of fairness that is a motivator for employees. If employees feel that certain employees are treated better than others, they won’t be as motivated to work hard.
- Step 3 – Establish a reward program to recognize employee achievement. Create guidelines for receiving recognition through the program.
- Step 4 – Apply raises consistently using set criteria. Raises based on performance helps motivate employees to work hard.
- Step 5 – Create work goals for each employee with her help. Meet with her to write the goals together. Use your performance evaluations as a time to write goals and evaluate past goals.
- Step 6 – Communicate with your employees on a regular basis, particularly if change within the company occurs. Uncertainty and lack of information promotes gossip and worries employees, which can chip away at their motivation.
- Step 7 – Assign leadership opportunities to employees who show they are able to handle the responsibility. Allow the employees to take the lead on projects without hovering over every move they make.
- Step 8 – Present all employees with educational opportunities related to work. Send employees to trainings or conduct your own sessions in the office.
via How to Create a Motivating Workplace | Chron.com.
To many CEOs and CFOs, the HR department as a revenue enhancer takes getting used to. That’s not the way they were taught.
They are more interested in the payoff and are asking appropriate questions: What’s in it for the company? Where is the improvement in the revenue stream? How does this get us new customers and retain our current customers. Where is the proof of corporate performance enhancement metrics?
Once they get solid answers to these questions from competent HR leaders, the CEOs are quick to change their thinking. To answer the payoff questions, recognize that a continual company-wide value chain analysis is critical to the success of any organization.
Over the past decade, CEOs began demanding that their Human Resources departments deliver flawless functional work and become a knowledgeable partner with all other disciplines to advance the business plan of the company.
Individual professional silos are breaking down. Disciplines such as finance, sales, marketing, operations, and HR no longer exist as stand alone entities. They are inter-dependent with one another. Weakness of any one of the links inhibits other links from maximizing their efficiency and productivity.
via Human Resources Department As a Profitability Factor.
The employer is automatically liable for harassment by a supervisor that results in a negative employment action such as termination, failure to promote or hire, and loss of wages. If the supervisor’s harassment results in a hostile work environment, the employer can avoid liability only if it can prove that: 1) it reasonably tried to prevent and promptly correct the harassing behavior; and 2) the employee unreasonably failed to take advantage of any preventive or corrective opportunities provided by the employer.
The employer will be liable for harassment by non-supervisory employees or non-employees over whom it has control (e.g., independent contractors or customers on the premises), if it knew, or should have known about the harassment and failed to take prompt and appropriate corrective action.
When investigating allegations of harassment, the EEOC looks at the entire record: including the nature of the conduct, and the context in which the alleged incidents occurred. A determination of whether harassment is severe or pervasive enough to be illegal is made on a case-by-case basis.
Strategic human resource management is the process of linking the human resource function with the strategic objectives of the organization in order to improve performance. Adopting an HR strategy that is concerned with the organization’s larger mission and goals has multiple advantages and benefits for the company.
- Helps Evaluate HR Policies – The premise of strategic HRM is that the company’s policies and procedures related to employees should fit into the organization’s broader strategic plan. Developing these links between HR and strategy has the distinct advantage of helping the organization to evaluate its current HR policies and to replace outdated or inefficient policies with ones that promote a better workplace environment and employee relations. As the company evaluates its HR policies, it can use the strategic plan’s aims and objectives to evaluate each HR process. Those that fall out of the strategic vision can be reformulated or discarded in favor of better ones.
- Team-builiding – Strategic HRM also helps to foster a sense of team spirit and camaraderie within the organization. A company’s strategic vision will ideally rely on input from a broad range of stakeholders including managers, employees, customers and investors. Creating an HR strategy that aligns with this sense of open communication can have the major benefit of helping stakeholders feel like their opinions are valued and meaningful to the company’s owners and executives.
- Helps Monitor Progress – While the strategic vision of the company can influence the creation and evaluation of HR policies, the reverse can also be true. Human resources can help the organization monitor its progress toward achieving its stated goals and objectives in the strategic plan. Much of the strategic plan is likely to rely on the cooperation and support of employees and individual departments or functions within the organization. HR has a key role to play in making sure that all of these components of the strategic plan are implemented in a timely and effective way. The advantage of this marriage between strategy and HR management is that the company’s executives and its HR function are consistently monitoring one another’s progress and tweaking processes for the benefit of the company and its employees.
- Keeps the Organization Legal – A final advantage of the human resource management strategy is in keeping the organization compliant with laws relating to employees, salary, insurance and the like. The laws and policies governing business are complex and can vary between jurisdictions, but HR has a key role to play in making sure that the organization’s strategic plan is not only presently legal but is also amendable enough that it can adapt to changing times and changing legal circumstances.
via The Advantages of the Human Resource Management Strategy | Chron.com.
Negligent hiring claims are preventable if employers do their job which is to ensure that employees and customers have a well-organized, safe work environment. In this work environment, people have a right to a reasonable expectation that they will not be injured or harmed. Customers have the right to the same expectation.
If a hiring decision made by an employer results in an employee who injures or harms a customer, coworker or any individual who comes into contact with the employee through work, the employer can be charged with negligent hiring.
A negligent hiring claim is made when the filer believes that the employer should have known about the employee’s background. In these claims, the filer attempts to prove that the injurious behavior was to be expected based on past behavior that demonstrated that the employee was dangerous, untrustworthy, a sexual predator, or a thief, to name a few possible claims.
Employers are most vulnerable to negligent hiring claims if they fail to:
- do a criminal background check on potential employees,
- check employment and personal references,
- check employment history and attempt to speak with former supervisors,
- validate college degrees,
- perform drug screening in particular industries,
- require physicals in some occupations,
- perform credit checks for some jobs,
- check driving records and history for some occupations, and
- confirm that other claims made by the applicant, such as why he left a prior employer, why he had a two year employment gap, why he worked at four companies in two years, and so forth, are true.
via Negligent Hiring Claims.
Built a stronger, more effective team—and give your organization the ultimate competitive advantage
In theory, teamwork is simple. Most of us already know what it requires. But in practice, teamwork is difficult. Building a team is a process, one that requires remarkable levels of discipline, courage, and persistence.
For a team to be truly effective, it must overcome the five dysfunctions as outlined by Patrick Lencioni in his best-selling The Five Dysfunctions of a Team:
- Absence of Trust. Members of great teams trust one another on a fundamental, emotional level, and they are comfortable being vulnerable with each other about their weaknesses, mistakes, fears, and behaviors.
- Fear of Conflict. Teams that trust one another are not afraid to engage in passionate dialogue around issues and decisions that are key to the organization’s success.
- Lack of Commitment. Teams that engage in unfiltered conflict are able to achieve genuine buy-in around important decisions, even when various members of the team initially disagree.
- Avoidance of Accountability. Teams that commit to decisions and standards of performance do not hesitate to hold one another accountable for adhering to those decisions and standards.
- Inattention to Results. Teams that trust one another, engage in conflict, commit to decisions, and hold one another accountable are very likely to set aside their individual needs and agendas and focus almost exclusively on what is best for the team.
via Wiley Workplace Learning :: 5 Dysfunctions of a Team – Overview.
Traditional and strategic human resources models differ significantly from each other. Many businesses have moved toward the strategic HR model because of its utility in building a business. Strategic human resources management is geared toward developing strategic plans that fit within the larger structure of the company’s plans, whereas traditional HR management is almost purely administrative in nature. Understanding the difference between traditional and strategic human resources can be important for the development of your business.
Step 1 – Examine the role of human resources managers as they have been traditionally understood. Human resources managers are often perceived as individuals responsible for hiring and recruiting workers for open jobs within a company or corporation. Aside from the hiring and recruiting aspect of the their job, human resources managers and professionals spend a considerable amount of time performing administrative tasks such as completing paperwork for new employees or training them for their new positions.
Step 2 – Note the primary difference in strategic HR, which is the fact that strategic human resources professionals are recognized as being strategic partners within the company. They work alongside top executives and other management professionals to determine how to best fit human resources initiatives within the overall strategic trajectory of the organization. Company strategy plays a more important role in the development of human resource policies than do basic administrative matters.
Step 3 – Recognize how the roles of the human resources manager traditionally have been defined. Traditional HR managers are primarily concerned with the acquisition and exit of workers from an organization. They also have played a role in training and development that is integral to the functioning of the company for which they work. Aside from these duties, human resources managers also administer pay plans and benefits received by employees.
Step 4 – Compare the differences between the two models. Traditional HR management lacks focus on the overall strategic initiatives of the company, whereas these are primary in strategic human resources management. Human resources policies and procedures revolve around these strategic plans and are developed in response to these plans. The traditional human resources department may develop policies in response to such plans, but it does not necessarily play an integral role in the planning process.
via The Difference Between Strategic & Traditional HR | Chron.com.