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Supervision

How conflict can be a positive influence in the workplace

How conflict can be a positive influence in the workplace

By on Aug 31, 2017 in Blog, Performance Management, Supervision | 0 comments

In the past, we’ve discussed various causes of workplace conflict as well as the importance of resolving conflict [see here and here].  But how do we go about addressing conflict when it occurs?  The first critical step to handling conflict is understanding that it can be a positive influence in the workplace and should not always be seen as a problem.  Instead, conflict can be viewed as an opportunity, for example, consider the following: Conflict leads to changes and improvements Conflict provides an opportunity to re-evaluate a situation, and forces us to look for new solutions – whether it’s in the way a team works together, how a service is delivered, or the way a product is used.  While it can seem like an unpleasant process to those involved, conflict leads to a better way once it has been recognized and resolved effectively. Conflict can be a sign that someone’s needs are not being met Conflict can be a symptom of someone’s dissatisfaction in the workplace.  If employee dissatisfaction is high, productivity, performance, and profitability will suffer.  The key to resolving conflict here is to identify what needs are not being met and find out why.  For example, employees may be looking for performance feedback—which management isn’t currently providing.  By diagnosing dissatisfaction, employers can move to increase worker satisfaction and benefit from dramatically improved business results. Conflict can result in amazing ideas Encouraging positive conflict is often a great way to innovate.  For instance, appointing a “devil’s advocate” when brainstorming is a well-known way of forcing participants to think about different sides of an idea and innovating further.  In the day-to-day workplace, as well as in a brainstorming session, conflict can work well in this way as long as it’s handled effectively. While conflict can be a destructive force, it can also be constructive if it is used as inspiration in a respectful and compassionate manner.  By being able to utilize conflict positively when it does happen, your business will create a healthy and innovative workplace environment. If you need assistance with conflict management or other human resource needs, contact us and check out our blog for more helpful...

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Creating effective management and successful supervisors

Creating effective management and successful supervisors

By on Aug 9, 2017 in Blog, Leadership, Supervision | 0 comments

As mentioned in our previous post, most companies promote workers into supervisor positions because they seemingly deserve it, rather than have the talent for it.  For example, a great contributor with long tenure may be given a promotion and put on a management track to keep them on the team.  However, it should be noted that the habits that made them successful as individual contributors are not the same ones that will make them effective leaders.  We’ve found that great leaders have many of the following talents: They motivate every single employee to take action and engage employees with a compelling mission and vision.  For more on employee motivation see here They have the assertiveness to drive outcomes and the ability to overcome adversity and resistance. They create a culture of clear accountability by checking in regularly with staff and making sure everyone has the tools needed to do their job. They delegate meaningful projects to their team members. This builds up their team and helps them reach their potential. They build relationships that create trust, open dialogue, and full transparency. They communicate clearly and make the time and space for people to talk and ask questions. They make decisions based on productivity, not politics. They are flexible and can adapt to individual employees and allow them to work according to their own individual style. Knowledge, experience, and skills develop our talents and the fundamental skills of management can be learned by anyone.  Since management is not something we are born knowing how to do, it is especially important to ensure that your supervisors are given the training and support needed to succeed.  Finally, remember that excellent managers come in all shapes and sizes and their management style can be as unique as personalities.  There is no single way to be a successful supervisor, instead recognizing what works for your company and developing those traits in your employees can help create effective leadership. If you need assistance strengthening your management team or other human resource needs, contact us and check out our blog for more helpful...

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Barriers to successful supervision and management

Barriers to successful supervision and management

By on Aug 7, 2017 in Blog, Leadership, Supervision | 0 comments

Time and time again many of our clients have expressed that finding great managers and supervisors is challenging, yet having a great leader can exponentially increase employee engagement and company growth.  Regardless of business size or industry, we have found that poor management contributes to poor performance.  Missing the managerial mark could drive good employees to leave the company and cost valuable time and money. Learning what makes a poor manager can help yours flourish in their role.  Sometimes, the barriers supervisors must overcome to be effective at their job are unintentionally set up by the employer.  Here are some common challenges supervisors face: Failing to officially designate someone as a supervisor even though you expect a person to fulfill the role.  For instance, sometimes the duties of a manager are added to an employee’s current position without giving that person a title.  This robs the person of any authority to enforce company standards. Failing to give supervisors the skill sets and tools to do the job.  Simply promoting the highest performer to a management role does not mean they will be a high performing supervisor.  The skills needed to be a manager are often different than the skills needed to be a successful programmer, machinist, salesperson, or engineer, for example. Providing inconsistent training and education.  Supervisors also need to be comfortable exchanging this information across the organization.  If their health and safety training and education vary, they may not understand and interpret the job requirements in the same way nor be able to discuss this information with each other. Communicating only one way.  Supervisors must be both the employer’s face to the workers and the workers’ face to the employer.  Employers need to make sure they are responding to concerns coming up through their supervisors, which also ensures concerns going down are addressed. Ignoring diversity in the workplace (e.g., culture, ethnicity, gender, age, and physical abilities).  Employers who fail to hire diverse supervisors or only hire supervisors who don’t know how to manage a diverse workforce may reinforce stereotypes and fuel conflict.  Working positively with diversity engages everybody. Eliminating these barriers will help supervisors transition into their management and contribute to their success in the new role.  Make sure to read...

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Why managers avoid dealing with conflict

Why managers avoid dealing with conflict

By on Apr 13, 2016 in Blog, Leadership, Supervision | 0 comments

Many managers are fearful of handling conflict because of perceived negative ramifications in the future. They are afraid that favorable employee relations may never be restored to a positive and productive level. It is not uncommon to become tense just at the thought of becoming involved in workplace conflict. Managers are concerned that if a conflict is not handled properly morale may be reduced, and that additional conflict may result. Frequently, managers just wish the conflict would go away, or look someone to blame. Today’s workers do not want conflicts made public. They fear that complaining could make them appear to be petty and incompetent or insecure and unprofessional. Customers and employees alike can sense tension. A manager must ensure a positive atmosphere in the workplace. As with any performance or Human Resource related situation, a manager’s ability to achieve compromise and build a consensus with the parties involved is essential to an effective resolution. Watch for new postings on workforce strategy here on our blog, as well as Facebook, LinkedIn,...

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The importance of resolving workplace conflict

The importance of resolving workplace conflict

By on Apr 11, 2016 in Blog, Performance Management, Supervision, Training and Development | 0 comments

It is generally assumed that employees conduct themselves in a professional manner in the workplace.  But, harmonious relationships don’t always exist, and occasionally a “difference of opinion” occurs, resulting in conflict. Here are some effects that can happen when conflict exists in the workplace: Productivity is hindered. Customer satisfaction is compromised. The atmosphere may be tense. An unpleasant environment is created. But conflict is reality. The issue is how to resolve conflict, because conflict can result in: Low productivity Absenteeism High employee turnover Theft Sabotage Litigation High insurance premiums It has been shown that 30% of a manager’s time in the workplace is spent resolving employee conflict. Valuable resources can be saved when a manager knows how to effectively control conflict. Overcoming employee conflict requires a high level of tact and diplomacy and may even necessitate: An intervention Ongoing negotiation Involving an external neutral party As with any performance or Human Resources related situation, a manager’s ability to achieve compromise and build a consensus with the parties involved is essential to an effective resolution. Watch for new postings on workforce strategy here on our blog, as well as Facebook, LinkedIn,...

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Defining the three phases of performance management: phase three – termination

Defining the three phases of performance management: phase three – termination

By on Apr 7, 2016 in Blog, Performance Management, Supervision | 0 comments

After conducting phase one [coaching] and phase two [corrective action] of performance management, it is time to move to the third and final stage of performance management: termination. Termination, or discharge, is the process of removing the employee from their position with the company. When all attempts to improve performance have failed, the position will be vacated in order to make room for a new employee who can fulfill the requirements of the position. Both you and your organization can benefit from the termination, in that poor performers may be separated from the company and workplace morale may improve upon separation of the poor performer. Strive for consistency as you progress through the various stages of performance management. Ensure that all concerns discussed in each of the three phases are directly related to the employee’s performance, in relation to company policies and performance expectations established for the position. Any written corrective action should be reviewed with your manager. Terminations should be reviewed by management, which can include Human Resources and your manager. Your management will provide feedback to ensure fairness and consistency, while protecting the liability of the organization. Watch for new postings on workforce strategy here on our blog, as well as Facebook, LinkedIn,...

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