If you are like most business owners, you take great care to reduce or eliminate dissension in the workplace. Although you probably understand that disputes are a natural part of working together, you probably do not expect an employee to have a dispute with your company.
Unfortunately, you cannot prevent every employment or labor dispute. Therefore, these are a few tips for solving these disputes.
Create An Employee Handbook
Your employee handbook should have a section on how to address disputes and complaints. They should explore your company’s harassment, bullying, overtime and other policies. Give all your employees your company handbook when they started working for you. You can also go over specific policies in detail to help prevent disputes.
Define The Issue
First, you need to understand the issue and find its root. What exactly is the employee complaining about? The dispute could revolve around pay, hours, work responsibilities, harassment, bullying or any number of other issues. You cannot solve the problem if you do not know what it is.
Focus On The Positive
Avoid dropping into negative talk when you discuss the dispute. Instead, keep your responses and solutions positive. Turn the conversation to areas that both you and the employee agree upon, including the origin of the problem. Your agreement and positivity show your employees that you care and you willingly listen to them.
Review Employment Agreements
When you hired your employees, they should have received and signed an employment agreement. Go over it with them and address whether your company violated the agreement. If the agreement falls short, negotiate a solution.
Communication is the key to dispute resolution. For the best result, encourage your employees to talk to you about issues so you can solve them before they turn into disputes.