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Today we are going to discuss grievances. So are you ready with your list! I am sure you will have a long one. In fact we are so much used to cribbing and complaining that we forget the good things of life. We take them for granted!! All right enough of thought provocation!! Let us begin with today's discussion. So what is your idea of a grievance? Expressions such as problem, discontentment, deep problem etc. can be used to describe a grievance. However please note that dissatisfaction or discontent per se is not a grievance. They initially find expression in the form of a complaint. When a complaint remains unattended and the employee concerned feels a sense of lack of justice and fair play, the dissatisfaction grows and assumes the status of a grievance. Dissatisfaction: maybe defined as anything that disturbs an employee, whether or nor such unrest is expressed in word e.g. engineers and technicians may be upset because they are suddenly instructed to observe regular hours. Complaint: It is a spoken or written dissatisfaction, brought to the attention of the supervisor and the union leader. The complaint may or may not specially assign a cause for dissatisfaction e.g. "four times this morning I have had to chase around looking for the pliers". Grievance: It is simply a complaint, which has been formally presented in writing, to a management representative or a union official. However for most of the people, the word "grievance" suggests a complaint that has been ignored, overridden or dismissed without due consideration. ILO defines a grievance as a complaint of one or more workers related to:
Wages and allowance Conditions of work Interpretation of service conditions covering such as OT, Leave, Transfer, Promotion, Seniority, Job Assignment & Termination of Service"
The National Commission on Labour Observed that "Complaints affecting one or more individual workers in respect of their workers
Wage payments, OT, Leave, Transfer Promotion, Seniority, Work Assignment & Discharges Constitute Grievances".
Let us examine another definition of grievance.
Definition: According to Michael Jucius, " A grievance can be any discontent or
dissatisfaction, whether expressed or not, whether valid or not, and arising out of anything connected with the company that an employee thinks, believes, or even feels as unfair, unjust, or inequitable." Let us understand this definition. A grievance means any discontentment or dissatisfaction in an employee arising out of anything related to the enterprise where he is working. It may not be expressed and even may not be valid. It arises when an employee feels that something has happened or is going to happen which is unfair, unjust or inequitable. Thus, a grievance represents a situation in which an employee feels that something unfavorable to him has happened or is going to happen. In an industrial enterprise, an employee may have grievance because of long hours of work, non-fulfillment of terms of service by the management, unfair treatment in promotion, poor working facilities, etc. Now let us go a step further by discussing the nature of grievance.
Nature of Grievance:
Grievances are symptoms of conflicts in the enterprise. Just like smoke could mean fire, similarly grievances could lead to serious problem if it is not addressed immediately! So they should be handled very promptly and efficiently. Coping with grievances forms an important part of any job. The manner in which a manager deal with grievances determines his efficiency of dealing with subordinates. A manager is successful if he is able to build a team of satisfied workers by removing their grievances. While dealing with grievances of subordinates, it is necessary to keep in mind the following points:
A grievance may or may not be real. Grievance may arise out of not one cause but multifarious causes. Every individual does not give expression to his grievances.
Please understand that complaints of employees relating to interpretation and implementation of agreements, labour legislations, various personnel policies, rules and regulations, past practices, code of conduct are very much grievances.
Disguised. awards.Imaginary. wage levels and variety of benefits. Thus. . why we talk about validity. We can get some insight on that by studying the Forms of Grievances. What do you think is the difference between grievance and conflict? Are they the same? Can they be used interchangeably? Now that is more than one question! Anyway. he is said to have a factual grievance. which we would be studying in detail a little later in the class. Thus. Conflicts are to be settled through collective bargaining. Now let me ask you a question. Individual employee or group of employees concerned and manager concerned play vital role in grievance procedure. A grievance may take any of the following forms: . conflicts have wider policy implications as compared to grievances. Trade unions and management participate in collective bargaining for settling disputes. We discussed in the definition of grievance that it may be valid or not. Individual and group grievances are to be redressed through grievance procedure. Please understand that differences between employees and employers relating to various personnel policies.Factual. . The problem that he has is real and not virtual 3 . Now don't tell me that you have forgotten the definition! Let us understand. factual grievances arise when the legitimate needs are unfulfilled. rules and regulations are conflicts.Another point that needs to be noted here is that the grievances may relate to either one employee (individual grievances) or group of employees (group grievances). for genuine or factual reasons like a breach of terms of employment or any other reasons that are clearly attributed to the management. Factual: When an employee is dissatisfied with his job.
We are all humans and are sensitive to the environment that we operate in!. Similarly if you have had a bad day in the institute. So be careful your grievances could be very much imaginary! Disguised: An employee may have dissatisfaction for reasons that are unknown to himself. Such a grievance is called an imaginary grievance. I am sure you will agree that if you have fought at home and come to the institute. FORMS OF GRIEVANCE FACTUAL IMAGINARY Disguised - Now that brings us to another important issue that is 4 . The managers have to detect the disguised grievances and attend to them by counseling the concerned employees. This may be because of pressures and frustrations that an employee is feeling from other sources like his personal life. Though it is not the fault of management. you cannot concentrate in the class.Imaginary : When an employee's grievance or dissatisfaction is not because of any factual or valid reason but because of wrong perception. They have to find out the root cause of the problem rather than find quick fix solutions to them. So the problem is not real. the responsibility of dealing with it still rests with the management. wrong attitude or wrong information he has. that will reflect in the mood at home. It is in the mind or just a feeling towards someone or something.
Identifying grievances: It is so beautifully described that good management redresses grievances as they arise. This can help the management to gather feedback and to genuinely incorporate feedback. These gripe boxes can perform the role of critics for the organisation. Exit interviews. The management should carefully act upon the information drawn from such employees . collective bargaining 5 . periodical interviews with employees. A manager can know about the problems even before they turn into actual grievances through several means such as: Exit interviews Suggestions boxes Opinion surveys Open door policy. (C) Opinion Survey : The management can be proactive by conducting group meetings. excellent management anticipates and prevents them from arising. They are different from the suggestion boxes in which employees drop their named suggestion with an intention to receive rewards It is normally said that if you want to progress in life. An effective manager thus has to be proactive. The management should carefully act upon the information thus gathered. you should be close to critics.It should be careful that the discontentment is reduced so that no more employees quit the organization because of similar reasons. Now I don't want to sound repetitive by saying that the internal customers of an organisation should be satisfied if the external customers are to be kept happy. (B) Gripe Boxes: These are boxes in which the employees can drop their anonymous complaints. Let us discuss this on by one in details: (A) Exit interview: Employees usually quit organizations due to dissatisfaction or better prospects elsewhere. if conducted carefully. can provide important information about employees' grievances.
The management should also remember that the employees might just need a patient hearing at times. This can be very effective because it ca n nip the evil in the bud. They need blow off the steam as we hear it more commonly. (D) Open-door Policy . Some organisation extend a general invitation to their employees to informally drop in the manager's room any time and talk over their grievances. through which one can get information about employees' dissatisfaction before it turns into a grievance. Summarizing the identification of grievances. 6 . That is it can take care of the problem before it gets out of hand. In fact the management should hold formal and informal get together with the employees.sessions etc.
employee relationship. If a grievance is found to be genuine or real (factual). Seniority and Promotional. their causes must be diagnosed. it is manager's job to detect the possible grievances and their causes. The causes of grievances may be broadly classified into the following categories: - Grievances resulting from working conditions . then it is necessary to explain and clear up the matter. He may realise the existence of grievances because of high turnover. These problems will go on multiplying if the causes of grievances are not cured. Transfer. machines and equipment for doing The job Unreasonably high production standards. - Changes in schedules or procedures. (3) Grievances resulting from personal maladjustment - Over .What leads to a grievance? Let us discuss the causes of grievances In order to handle the grievances efficiently.ambition. it is necessary to find and analyse the grievances of the subordinates. - Grievances resulting from management policy - Wage payment and job rates. Disciplinary action. Overtime. But if the grievance arises due to imagination or disturbed frame of mind of the worker.Improper matching of the worker with the job. Lack of role clarity. Poor working conditions. Leave. Excessive self-esteem or what we better know as ego. etc. the corrective action should be taken immediately. Lack of employee development plan. Non-availability of proper tools. high rate of absenteeism and poor quality of work. Bad employer . 7 . Before dealing with the grievances. But when the grievances are not given expression by the subordinates.
an employee should raise his grievance with his immediate superior. It should be simple so that an average employee is able to understand it. but also to prevent him from 8 . yet the following principles should be observed while laying down a procedure: 1. the man's superior will know what is happening. Even if it cannot be settled at that level. It is advisable to set up an effective grievance procedure in the organization. The procedure should be flexible enough to meet the requirements of the organization. This may sound a little boring to you but it is necessary for you to be aware of it as HRM students.- Impractical attitude to life etc. Though such a procedure will vary in different organizations. Coming on to the effects of Grievances. This is necessary not only to maintain his authority. A grievance should be dealt with in the first instance at the lowest level: that is. Let us see what can you add to this list. Some of the effects have been listed below. It may be simple to settle it on the spot and that will be the end of it. Effects of Grievances : - Frustration Alienation Demotivation Slackness Low Productivity Increase in Wastage & Costs Absenteeism In discipline Labor unrest Let me now throw some light on Establishing a grievance procedure.
if he is by-passed and hears of the complaint from his own superior. It should be agreed that there would be no recourse to the official machinery of conciliation unless the procedure has been carried out and there is still dissatisfaction. Since delay causes frustration and tempers may rise and rumors spread around the work. As the name suggests. Under this policy.Door Policy and the step. he thinks the man who skipped him is disrespectful. as he will certainly be. 2. it is necessary because it is going to be applicable to the employees and not only that.. Have you read something about the Open . 3. the front-line supervisor who should be the first man to know about the grievances of his subordinates is by passed. 6. it is essential that grievances should be dealt with speedily. he fears that he will incur his superior's displeasure because of his failure to handle his subordinates will interpret this. it has some prerequisites.being aggrieved. Open door policy: Under this policy. Though this policy appears to the attractive. The open door policy is workable only in small organizations. Can you explain to me that why do we need to take inputs from the employees while framing the policies? Yes. and moreover. 9 . Secondly. there must be no direct action on either side. the management keeps its doors open for the employees to share their problems. 4. 5. which might prejudice the case or raise tempers while the grievance is being investigated.ladder procedure of discipline!! Let me explain them to you one by one. This provokes him in two ways. the top management does not have the time to attend to innumerable routine grievances daily that is the work of lower-level mangers.. if the employees have contributed to the policies then their commitment is higher. any employee can take his grievance to the chief boss and talk over the problem. In big organizations. It is said that this policy can remove the cause of grievance quickly. It must be made clear to the employee what line of appeal is available. similarly the problems of the employees should be taken care of by the management least it should become a major for the management. If he cannot get satisfaction from his immediate superior. The grievance procedure should be set up with the participation of the employees and it should be applicable to all in the organisation. First. As it is said that a stitch in time saves nine. he should know the next higher authority to which he can go. The policies and rules regarding grievances should be laid down after taking inputs from the employees and it should be uniformly applicable to all in the organisation.
If the worker is dissatisfied with the answer. which shall make its recommendations within 7 days to the manger. A dissatisfied worker can apply to the management for a revision of its decision within on week's time. If he is dissatisfied with the answer. According to the Model Grievance Procedure. he may ask that his grievance should be referred to the Grievance Committee. who will give his answer within 3 days. The management must implement unanimous recommendations of this committee. an aggrieved employee shall first present his grievance verbally in person to the officer designated by the management for this purpose. An answer shall be given within 48 hours. 10 . the employee with a grievance has to proceed step by step unless he is able to redress his grievance.Step-Ladder Procedure Under the step-ladder procedure. the worker will present his grievance to the head of the department.
open door policies. Gossip and Grapevine offer vita! clues about employees grievances Gripe boxes. Management. In the absence of such a procedure. he may be given questionnaire to fill up and post the same after getting all his dues cleared from the organization where he is currently 12 . he can express his feelings of injustice or discontent 'ankly and without any fear ot victimization 4) Open door Policy: This is a kind of walk-in-meeting with the manager when the employee can express his feelings openly about any work related grievance. reporting late for work of is remaining absent-the signals are fairly obvious Since the supervisor is close to the scene of action he can always find out such unusual behaviours and report promptly 2) Grievance Procedure. grievances pile up and burst up in violent forms at a future date. periodic interviews exit surveys could also be undertaken to uncover the mystery surrounding grievances These methods are discussed below 1). impairing cordial relations between labour and management if management fails to induce employees to express their grievances. the manager must encourage the employee to give a correct picture so as to rectify the mistakes promptly If the employee is not providing fearless answers. If the manager tries sincerely through an exit interview he might be able to find out the real reasons why 'x1 is. leaving the organization To elicit valuable information.Discovery of Grievances Grievances can be uncovered in a number of ways. Observation: A manager/supervisor can usually track the behaviours of people working under him. The manager can cross-check the details of the complaint through various means at his disposal 5) Exit interview: Employees usually leave their current jobs due to dissatisfaction or belter prospects outside. spoiling materials due to carelessness or recklessness. By that things might have taken an ugly shape altogether. showing indifference to commands. If a particular employee is not getting along with people. must encourage employees to use it whenever they have anything to say. A systematic grievance procedure is the best means to highlight employee dissatisfaction at various levels. to this end. unions will take over and emerge as powerful bargaining representatives Gripe Boxes: A gripe box may be kept at prominent locations in the factory for lodging anonymous complaints pertaining to any aspect relating to work Since the complainant need not eveal his identity.
the fundamental assumption being that individuals' more important than production targets. 1. management could. The management and the worker. 2. It is quite likely that understanding their -Leeds are grievances will help in attaining production targets. and the process for dealing with the grievance is clear to all concerned and specified with the time span for each stage The provisions and the interpretations thereon of the contract are of paramount importance. alternatively. it amounts to the "spirit'' in which the grievance procedure is implemented in an organization involving both managerial and worker attitudes. but primarily individuals are the end rather than a means to the end. The model Grievance Procedure provides for five successive time-bound steps. in the final analysis. with or without a contract. intact. Obviously. follow the provisions therein Grievances are those defined by the contract. or it need not have a contract but have a grievance machinery oriented towards a human relations approach to its workers. The labour contract approach is a wholly legalistic approach. The employee anil specific problem is the major concern. MODELS GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE: The Model Grievance Procedure was formulated in pursuance to the Code of discipline adopted by the 16th Session of the Indian Labour Conference in 1958. Or. categories covered by the contract. many organizations have practices somewhere in between It is possible to envisage a contract with a human relations approach. these are two extreme situations. We shall now examine some of these approaches. Most of the grievance procedures now a day are built around the Model Grievance Procedure with certain changes to suit the size and special requirements of an enterprise. if the intention is to uncover the truth behind the curtain Approaches to the Grievance Machinery Various approaches have been documented reflecting the attitude of management and employees to the grievance machinery. Management could take a legalistic view and follow the negotiated contract. The concern is for understanding and doing something help overcome the individuals' problem. have an open-door policy. The human relations school is the antithesis of the legal contract school. more than concern for specific exceptions depending on the circumstances of the case.6) Opinion Surveys: Surveys may be conducted periodically to elicit the opinions of employees about trie organization and its policies It is better to use as many channels as possible. These are as under: 13 .
The final decision of the management shall be communicated to the worker within the stipulated period (3 days) by the Personnel Officer. If the decision of the departmental head is unsatisfactory. If the worker is not satisfied with the decision of this officer or fails to receive an answer within the stipulated period. The management shall communicate its decision within a week. the above procedure shall not apply. During the working time. which shall make its recommendations to the management within 7 days of the worker's request. he shall in person or by his departmental representative. 14 . the aggrieved worker may request the forwarding of his grievance to the Grievance Committee. holidays shall not be included. In the above-mentioned procedure the following points should be noted: Calculating the various time intervals under the above clauses.An aggrieved employee shall first present his grievance verbally in person to the officer designated by the Management for this purpose. the concerned person may go for enquiry with the Labour/personnel Officer. 4. And he will get the answer within 3 days of the presentation of his grievance. present his grievance to the head of the department designated by the management for this purpose. 2. In the case of any grievance arising out of the discharge or dismissal of a worker. 1. If no agreement is possible the union and the Management may refer the grievance to voluntary arbitration within a week from the date of receipt by the worker of the management's decision. he may appeal wither to the dismissing authority or to a senior authority within a week from the date of dismissal or discharge. if required. If it is so. An answer shall be given to him within 48 hours of the presentation of the complaint. 5. A revision of his grievance can be done if the decision is not satisfactory. The Management shall provide the necessary clerical and other assistance for the smooth functioning of the grievance machinery. provided the he has taken permission from his supervisor. 3. Hence he may not suffer any loss of payment.
d) Taking an appropriate decision after a careful consideration of ail the facts e} Communicating the decisions. These should comprise: a) Receiving and defining the nature of the grievance. definite and prompt. after taking into consideration the econcmic. unsatisfactory or unacceptable this stage may comprise three. psychological and legal issues involved in them.Elements of a Grievance Procedure The basic elements of a grievance redressal procedure are i) The existence of a sound channel through which a grievance may pass for redressal if the previous stage or channel has been found to be inadequate. b) Getting at the relevant facts. iii) The steps in handling a grievance should be clearly defined. to the aggrieved employee iv) Whatever the decision. i) The procedure should be simple. for any complexity or vagueness or delay may lead to an aggravation of the dissatisfaction of the aggrieved employee. social. it should be followed up in order that the reaction of the decision may be known and in order to determine whether the issue has been closed or not. c) Analysis the facts. about the grievance. four or five sub-stages. 15 .
It should also be noted that if there are symptoms. If the grievances are imaginary or unfounded. The management must show it anxiety to remove the grievances of the workers. Follow up action should be taken to know the response of the forced employee. This is to make sure that he is happy or not! At the end of the day - - - - - - - - the satisfaction of the aggrieved party is necessary. - 16 . The management should be empathetic. Every case has to be dealt with on merit. All grievances should be put into writing. The following guidelines may help to deal effectively with the grievances: - The complaint should be given a patient hearing by his superior. He should be allowed to express himself completely.. The superior should try to get at the root of the problem. The management should not haste! Decision taken to redress the grievance of the worker must be communicated to him. The workers should feel that the management is genuinely interested in solving its problems. Some proofs required as well. It should be remembered that symptoms are not the problems. Every grievance must be handled within the reasonable time limit. solutions. there would be a problem as well. attempts should be made to remove the causes. Imagine you have a genuine problem and you share it with the authorities. You will also expect immediate action taken to take care of your problem. If the grievances are real and their causes located. I am sure you will agree with this. Relevant facts about the grievance must be gathered.Guidelines for Effective Handling: Grievance While dealing with grievances. a manager cannot depend upon some readymade. attempts should be made to convince the workers.
and Adequate participation of the union. Information about the procedure should be thoroughly disseminated among all employees through pictures. Time limit should be placed at each step and it should be rigidly followed at each level. All the policies should be conveyed to the concerned parties. 3. grievances should be settled at the lowest level No matter should ordinarily be taken up at more than two levels. 4. Employees must know the authorities to be contacted at various levels. diagrams. Simplicity: The following points should be noted in this regard: - The procedure should be simple enough to be understood by every employee.e. Training: In order to ensure effective working of the grievance procedure.ESSENTIALS OF A GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE: A grievance procedure should incorporate the following features: 1. Reasonable exercise of authority to the manager. 2. Different types of grievances may be referred to appropriate authorities. i. charts. Where practicable. The procedure should aim at a rapid disposal of the grievance. This can be achieved by incorporating the following feature in the procedure: As far as possible. The steps should be as few as possible. etc. In order to be generally acceptable. normally there should be only one appeal. Acceptability: Everybody must accept the grievance procedure. Conformity with existing legislation: The procedure should be designed in conformity with the existing statutory provisions. 17 . Promptness: Speedy settlement of a grievance is the cornerstone of a sound personnel policy. it must ensure the following: - A sense of fair-play and justice to the worker. It should be remembered that justice delayed is justice denied. it is necessary that supervisors and the union representatives should be given training in working of the grievance procedure. Channels for handling grievances should be carefully developed. the procedure can make use of such machinery as the law might have already provided for. 5.
Please note that there can be a shortcut to handling Grievances. Let the Employee Talk 1. Therefore it is necessary that the grievance procedure should be reviewed whenever it is so required.6. Tell the employee when he will get an answer. A regular follow up of the system increase the faith of the people in the system. - Put the employee at ease Listen him in private Listen with sincere interest Do not argue Probe for the real grievance Get all the details Check the employees story Take notes Repeat the grievance in your own words. Let us study this in the form a checklist. Follow-up: The personnel department should review the working of the grievance procedure periodically and necessary changes should be introduced to make it more effective. Checklist for Handling Grievances: 1. This is generally ignored by the organizations. Check the Facts Consult others Refer to the written policy Consider the employee's view point Look at the employee's record Telling the Employee - Be willing to admit mistake Give the benefit of doubt If the employee's grievance is unfounded explain 18 .
continuity of service. compensation. In cases of appeal against punishment. discharge/dismissal. 4. however.- Keep your cool Prepare the case for appeal. Stage I The employee should discuss it with his shift-in-charge or an equivalent. leave. should 19 . the employee should meet his general foreman or an equivalent. If necessary. has the right to take up such matters at the Central Works Committee. victimization. who should immediately give the acknowledgement receipt. promotion. transfer. Scope The grievance procedure normally deals with matters relating to amenities/facilities. Those cases which are pending with the Works committee are not discussed at any other level till the case is withdrawn from the Works Committee. increment. nature of job. warning letter. fines. misconduct. Follow Through - Take prompt action to correct the cause of the grievance Check with employer Don't let it happen twic GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE FOR PERMANENT EMPLOYEE TISCO In so far as the grievances of the workers are concerned. safety. medical benefits. the issues and interpretation of policies are discussed only at the top management level. suspension. The union. he should fill up the Grievance From I and submit it to the general foreman.
Cases of suspension may be submitted within a week of the receipt of suspension order of the decision at Stage I. Double-check them. the time limit may be relaxed. Stage III If the employee is not satisfied with the decision at Stage II. Informality: Discussions should be held in a non-threatening atmosphere.make the necessary enquiries and return the form with his remarks or those of the departmental head within two days. Verbal is better than written. though not an executive order. unnecessary anxieties can occur. Appeals against discharge/dismissal have to be addressed only to the chairman of the Zonal Works Committee within two months of the receipt of the orders of discharge or dismissal. - - 20 . Be accessible: Make sure your employees know how to use the procedures. Where its recommendations are not unanimous. Initiate discussion quickly and investigate all the facts. How should I handle a grievance? : Practical tips for mediation - Deal with the grievance promptly: If it looks like you are avoiding discussing the matter. your employee may feel they need "legal" assistance. The departmental head will pass an order within threeworking days. If the case requires reference to higher authorities. Based on the committee's unanimous recommendations to which no objection is raised by management or the union. the management will decide the case within A days of the receipt of such recommendations. he may appeal to the chairman of the Zonal Works Committee on an ordinary paper or a Grievance Form III within a week of the reply received at Stage II. he can appeal to the head of the department directly on Grievance Form II within three days of receiving the reply from the general foreman. shall be deemed to in the nature of a final decision in the matter. Stage II If the employee is still dissatisfied with the decision. The unanimous recommendations of the Zonal Works Committee. Encourage complaints! Seeing the grievance procedure working effectively is the best advertisement you can have for resolving workplace grievances. the Zonal Committee will refer the matter to the Central or Special Works Committee. No one should receive a printed form letter in response to a problem. Remember. when such a letter is perceived as "legal".
so open by saying. even if it's a noisy protest about the lack of a cappuccino machine in the lunchroom. Closure: Decide your response/action and give a full explanation. These five strategies make that easier: 1." 3. 'I appreciate. Admit errors: If you have acted incorrectly or inappropriately . "the complaints go underground. a motivational coach based in Littleton. Set up a formal process for submitting grievances that's communicated to everyone. This allows the matter to be finalised. In that case.say so! Then fix the problem.fits-all platitudes. co-author of "Absolute Honesty. "Supervisors should set a time 21 . The way you react to a complaint immediately sets a tone." Don't trivialize the grievance." says Larry Johnson. Respond to the specific employee and his particular beef. surfacing as water cooler conversation and emails that reek of Dilbert-esque cynicism. author of "Motivate Everyone." 2. but you should be courteous. Resolving complaints The best way to clear the air of complaints is to focus on problems before they fester. Don't let complaints slide on slick reassurances or one-size. You don't have to remedy every complaint. "So when addressing employee issues. I understand why you might feel that way. To avoid legal pitfalls. clearly define the process and ensure that it's private and moves toward an outcome or resolution. Learn from it: The resolution of this grievance should give you practical insight in how to deal with this situation (and possibly others) in the future. Recognize the individual. Direct traffic. Managers often discourage employees from telling them what's wrong by subtle threats or outright punishment.- Be consistent: Having policies and procedures in place means that all employees are treated in the same way. "I've found that in a large majority of cases. Colo. it's critical to tune in to those individual needs." says Brad Cooper. employee complaints can be traced to their temperament. I respect.'" says Jay Arthur. not some generic response. Watch your tongue. "Employees want to be heard.
"No employee likes secrets or surprises. He suggests responses such as: "Good point. vacation.. "Owners can't remember what they tell everyone they hire." says Tim Dimoff. whose SACS Consulting firm in the Cleveland area counsels companies on such issues as employee drug abuse and workplace violence. privately. His work involves loading machines." - Send the right message. After that. So every employee works with different rules and guidelines on compensation. But it's in their best interest. The CEO might talk about business trends. harassment or discriminatory behavior and on and on. Most small-business owners can't be bothered to write one. worries he has." Dimoff says. if something's on their mind. pleas of ignorance or similar unrest is by citing the policies of a formal employee handbook or manual. investigate it and don't let it go by will stop it from growing." says management consultant John Reddish at Advent Management in Chadds Ford. We can fix that... he might ask. sick leave.in which to respond." "In a small business. Obviously. Ram Avatar works as a helper in the Machine shop of a large engineering company. arranging materials and also 22 . "In the course of the meeting. But ignoring them altogether can only cause damage. so I can better evaluate or act on it. all complaints aren't created equal.. "Companies that respond to a complaint. Attorney Michel's suggests periodic "town meetings. o "Can you clarify your complaint and/or get me more facts by [such-and-suchtime]. it's easier to get everyone in a room and get employee buyin. a casual "state of the company" address." o "We can't change the situation and here's why. "It's all about communication." he says. Pa. of course. " Explain your company policy. He might also invite employees to talk to him later. - Be consistent. Lip service won't do. you need to make it comfortable. "The best companies are places where the chain of communication goes both ways." Then identify and document how. To truly create an atmosphere that rewards employees for coming forward." Michels says. 'What else would you like us to address?'" Michels says. There are dozens of ways to achieve that. The way around accusations of favoritism. the impact of international events ² basically." Dimoff says. don't forget to update HR or any appropriate managers. Start working on that manual.
So Ram Avatar talks to the union representative for the machine shop. who happens to work in an adjacent building. But only chance to win would be if we could show that the supervisor was doing this to Ram Avatar because he didn't like him. Here is the General Secretary's reaction: "This is not a simple case. All helpers are hired with the understanding that they will be doing one or all of the tasks noted above. Sharma. The representative discusses the problem with Sharma and reports back to Ram Avatar the next day. So it seems a better use of manpower to have Ram Avatar spend more of his time cleaning machines. we have to be careful. "When I complained that my uniform (supplied by the company) was too torn. Recently Ram Avatar has noticed that he is required to spend much more time cleaning machines than are the other helpers. Ram Avatar is the newest employee. Here is actually nothing to prevent the company from changing a man's work." Ram Avatar agrees to sign the formal grievance papers charging Sharma with discrimination. Discuss it with Ram Avatar. Sharma said I was always complaining and ought to have something to really complain about for a change". Secondly. Since this is the least pleasant and lowest -status of all his tasks. after all. Sharma feels that some of the other men are more skilled in handling the material and feeding machines. He says it's his job to make decisions like this one. He notes on the printed form that his assignment to excessive clearing duties followed an argument with Sharma over new uniforms. Then he decides that. Unsatisfied by Sharma's answer. The grievance is also signed by the representative the supervisor himself signs it. Our present agreement is weak on this point. help is what he pays dues for. they may get pretty sore if more of this cleaning work is thrown at them. I'm not satisfied with his answer. He hesitates for a while. for fear that such a step may antagonize his supervisor and win him the reputation of troublemaker. he thinks it is unfair that he should have to do so much of it. Sharma refuses to do anything. I'll see the general Secretary tonight at the union meeting and see what he says. the whole thing may backfire.cleaning the machines. get him to sign a grievance. and if he has some evidence on this. That would be covered by clause 14." The representative goes to the General Secretary and describes the case. Ram Avatar considers calling in the union for help. they might be able to justify paying him less money since his work may now be less skilled than before. When Ram Avatar discusses his problems with the supervisor. and if they start giving him a lot of the dirty jobs if they want to be meaning about it. In the first place we have to consider the reaction of the other men in the department. but only after adding this note: 23 . he is told that job assignments are arranged in order to use the workforce more efficiently. and he is not trying to discriminate against you.
it is up to the supervisor to make such decisions in accordance with his own work requirements and the available manpower. After the manager receives the grievance. He also checks with the GM . So while he will caution Sharma to make sure such assignments are dictated by work needs and not by his personal feelings toward particular employees. The manager tells the general Secretary that even though a man may feel he is getting more than his share of unpleasant jobs. "No agreement violation. he calls in the supervisor.Grievance refused . The manager's answer to the grievance is. supervisor was acting within normal management prerogatives. The company has a firm policy that no supervisor is to allow personal feelings to enter into personnel decisions. the grievance will have to be refused." Question 1) Does Ram Avatar have a grievance? Question 2) Why does the union think that it is a weak case? Question 3) Explain the way the supervisor has handled the case? Question 4) If you were the supervisor. Sayles.Personnel to see whether similar cases have established precedents in this area that would affect the settlement. the manager feels that he cannot grant the grievance. how would you have handled the case? Case prepared based on the book "Personnel: The Human problems of Management" by George Strauss and Leonard R.employee has not been discriminated against. The manager is at first concerned that this might be a cause for discrimination. Having satisfied himself that Sharma was right." Then in the General Secretary sends the grievance to the plant manager. Sharma to get his version of the case. To do so would be to open the door to a stream of union challenges of work assignments. asking for an appointment to talk over the matter. 24 .
www.com.gooogle. Zack www. www.BIBLIOGRAPHY Grievance Arbitratrretion by Arnold M.com. 25 .comom.Wipepedia.scribed.
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