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Dictionary meaning…

• it is the training that corrects, moulds,

strengthens or perfects.
• it is control gained by enforcing
• punishment or chastisement.
According to Richard D. Calhoon

Discipline is the force that

• prompts individuals of groups
• to observe rules, regulations,
standards and procedures
• deemed necessary for an
Simply put it has 3 things:
• Self-Discipline;
• the necessary condition of orderly
behaviour; and
• the act of training and punishing
Act of Indiscipline
Some thing of duty
which tends
to defy
the set rules Misuse of
and procedures office
fighting property

May pertain to
Akshay’s dilemma
• Amit Kashyap, an MBA-HR from a premier B-school
joined PMR consultancy 3 years ago. PMR consultancy is
into the field of behavioral & soft skills training for
various prestigious clients. Amit has been working as a
principal consultant and his job profile includes training
needs assessment of the clients’ training needs and
accordingly prepare a tentative training plan, keeping in
mind the available trainers and the free-lancers.
• Akshay, one of the directors, of PMR has been very
impressed with Amit’s performance but is now going
through a dilemma. Amit along with his MBA also had a
PG diploma in Industrial psychology, which had made
his CV very impressive at the time of hiring.
• PMR, being a small firm at that time, had never bothered about a detailed
background check of employees’ past and qualifications.
• Yesterday, Akshay had been to his school reunion meet. There he met
one of his old school time junior Vijay, and heard from him about the
adventure of Vijay and another of his friend Amit having got fake
degrees for Industrial psychology and now making it big in their own
• Vijay, working with an OD consultant, was happy that they have been
able to prove their mettle too, and hence do not have any reason to be
affected by the fake certificate issue even if it becomes known.
• Akhshay has a strong feeling that the Amit, Vijay was talking of happens
to be his own principal consultant. He is now worried. With his
organization growing in numbers and gaining popularity, he is afraid that
leakage of such information could cause havoc.
• What should he do now? How should he approach the issue?
Nature of indiscipline/ misconduct

• On-the job problems

– Absenteeism, alcoholism, etc.
– Violation of rules
– Insubordination
• Off the job concerns
– Association with anti-social groups
– Falsification of documents etc.
Causes of Indiscipline

• Unfair Management Practices

• Absence of Effective Leadership
• Communication Barriers
• Inadequate attention to personal
• Poor mental health
• Absence of code of conduct
Preventative Discipline
Action taken prior to any infraction, to
encourage employees to follow the rules so
infractions are prevented.
Corrective Discipline
Action that follows a rule infraction and
seeks to discourage further infractions.
Positive Discipline
• Focus on the specific problem rather than the
employee’s attitude or personality.
• Gain agreement with the employee that a
performance problem exists and that the
employee is responsible for changing his or her
• Approach discipline as a problem-solving
Negative Versus ‘Positive’
• Three reasons managers avoid imposing traditional discipline
– Loss of organizational harmony
– Fear of formal grievances
– Fear of loss of productivity

• Positive Discipline, an alternative to traditional discipline

– Employees who commit offenses first get an oral “reminder” rather than a
– If behavior remains unchanged, the employee receives a written reminder
– The fully documented process if followed by termination if the employee
does not change
Improving Effectiveness
of Progressive Discipline
• Progressive discipline – a procedure that proceeds
from an oral warning to a written warning to a
suspension to dismissal
• Effectiveness maintained by four steps
– The employee needs to know what the problem is
– The employee must know what to do to fix the problem
– The employee must have a reasonable period of time to fix
the problem
– The employee must understand the consequences of
Firing Employees Legally &
• Companies should familiarize all supervisors with
company policies and provide a termination checklist
to use
• Before deciding to dismiss an employee
– Conduct a detailed review of all relevant facts
– To ensure consistent treatment, examine how similar cases
have been handled in the past
– After deciding on termination, a termination interview
should minimize the trauma for the affected employee
Hot-Stove Rule
The principle that disciplinary action should
be like touching a hot stove; with warning,
immediate, consistent, and impersonal.
Hot-Stove Rule for Applying Discipline

Figure 19.1
Disciplinary Procedure

• Issue of Charge Sheet

• Consideration of Explanation
• Suspension Pending Enquiry
• Holding Enquiry
• Order of Punishment
Contents of code of Discipline

• Management & Union Agree

• Agreement on part of
• Agreement on part of Union.