At the workplace, it is very obvious to arise conflicts among workers due to varied reasons and cause operational difficulties. This report has been prepared with the aim to build a professional skills portfolio to identify the workplace problems and suggesting solutions to overcome it. Moreover, it will also present an analysis of the social event employee behaviour policy and servant leadership style along with its benefits for the business.
1. Identifying problems presented in the case study
In the cited case scenario, a sales manager is managing a team of 15 sales people who are responsible to sell vacuum cleaners to the consumers in allocated geographical location. The problems that have been tracked in the case are stated here as under:
- Increasing animosity between two of the best sales manager, Sam & John is the main difficulty founded because both of the staff members are claiming that they are approaching each other’s customer and resulted physical fight.
- Unhealthier workplace: Due to ineffective relationship between Sam & John, team was divided which is a sign of poor workplace culture, in which, some people believe in Sam & other are with the John (Johnston and Marshall, 2016).
- Huge decline in Bob’s sales performance by 30% which caused financial problems and he started working early morning to late night (5:30 AM to 2:00PM).
2. Causes of different conflicts
- Differences in Sam & John’s thoughts, opinions and personalities may be the reason behind their claim and arguments which caused physical fighting.
- Lack of proper communication is another reason for the same. It is because, at the workplace, it is the prior need for everyone to communicate properly and effectively all the information, thus, poor communication and the hurdles in it can create complexities for the sales staff in smooth work flow.
- Competition: Unhealthy work culture creates competition among workers which is a reason for employee conflicts (Ward, 2016). In the given case, every sales staff is incentivised for the best sales performance which lacks co-operation, therefore, it might be the reason why Sam and John claimed against each other, so as to generate greater amount of bonus.
3. Ways to avoid conflicts
Workplace conflicts can be mitigated by approaching the following ways, presented here as under:
- Effective communication: The most important way to handle the conflicts took place between Sam & John is to create effective communication policies, so that, both the members and others can be communicated easily with the necessary information and leads to build an effective and collaborative work culture (Mukerjee, 2013).
- Team-activities: It can be conducted to promote informal relationship among workers through personal interaction which strengthen bonding and relationship among workers and resolve ineffective relationship among both the Sam & John.
- Team-working: It is essential for the manager to create, build and retain an effective and collaborative working culture, in which, everyone is being promoted to work collaboratively in a team so as to arrive the defined goals.
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4. Dealing with the specified situation
Being a Manager, I will approach following ways to handle problems in the workplace that are enumerated underneath:
- Time management: In the stated case, it is clearly stated that Bob was working very late, therefore, being a manager, I would definitely train my team members to improve their time management skills to effectively and timely finish their work through training sessions. In this way, scheduling, target-setting, prioritizing and others will enable all my staff members to smoothen the work flow and complete it by the deadline (Chase and et.al., 2013).
- Stress management: During the peak load, excessive pressure and poor relationship, workers feel obviously stressed. Stress management is the process of using various psychotherapies to reduce mental chronic stress to an individual for improving well-being (Folkman, 2013). Team activities, motivation, praising sales team for their best efforts, employee empowerment and engagement, balanced schedule, strong commitment and other are the several ways which can Sam, John, Bob and others to handle workplace stress in an effective way.
- Business etiquette: Sam & John physically fought against each other by claiming that they are approaching each other’s consumer for exceeding sales to get greater bonus. Thus, I will provide guidance to my team workers, more importantly, Sam & John about business etiquettes how they have to behave with each other and co-workers (Tam and Tam, 2016). I definitely encourage them to respect each other’s work and contribution and show courtesy for creating a pleasant, familiar and healthier workplace.
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SOCIAL EVENT EMPLOYEE BEHAVIOUR POLICIES
Introduction and rationale
As per the social event employee behaviour policy, it is the liability of the employer to make it sure that every individual at the workplace behave and treated their co-workers and others in an ethical and responsible manner and for the unfair and unethical behaviour, they can be fired and dismissed. In the cited case, Sam & John claimed against each other and cause physical injuries to each other. Therefore, this policy provides the necessary guidelines to prevent such activities from the workplace to create a familiar and healthier environment.
In accordance with the theory, employer will be liable only for those activities and functioning of their staff which has been conducted in line with the job responsibilities or working duties i.e. discrimination & misconduct.
Taking part in meeting, compliance with the employment policies, rule and regulations and assigned duties are the acceptable behaviour. Moreover, it is the duty of every sales staff i.e. Sam, John and Bob to follow necessary legislations while executing their job duties like consumer protection, advertisement policies and others (Dougherty and Goldstein Hode, 2016). In order to encourage the sales, staff can employ various ethical practices to motivate customer to purchase the vacuum cleaners.
- Discrimination on the basis of caste, gender, race, originality, ethnicity and any other is not accepted.
- Misconduct like abusing, physical injuries and arguing others are considered unaccepted and unethical behaviour of the worker (Nahavandi, 2016).
- Sexual harassment is also a risk and in order to mitigate it, harassment policy must be designed by which all the staff will be adhere to follow while executing their job responsibilities.
- Drinking alcohol, fraudulent activities and mislead the consumers by rendering their incorrect information is also not accepted.
Informal meetings and conversation can be conducted to guide the team mates to treat consumer ethically and they also can be motivated to behave in the responsible manner with the co-workers and customer too. Team-activities and collaborative work culture also motivate them to avoid any misconduct at the workplace by Sam & John and adhere with the policies.
In this, manager can visited at the geographical sites allotted to Sam & John and inquire the reasons why conflicts took place between John & Sam. Physical observation of the practical working practices and discussion with all the workers assist them to detect the reasons behind such conflicting situations i.e. poor communication, differences in opinion and competition. Moreover, personal meeting with the Bob also assist manager to determine the reasons behind declined performance of Bob and identify their problem like financial crunch and others (Harvey, 2014). By identifying the reasons, necessary actions can be taken like time-management skills, stress-reduction, team-working and business etiquette to create familiar environment at the workplace by resolution of conflicts.
The concept has been propounded by the Robert Greenleaf which comprises a set of philosophy that aims at maximizing the individual’s performance and builds healthier relationship via leading employees in the best manner. As per this, servant leader is one who considers the other worker’s contribution, values their efforts and seeks opinion, ideas and suggestions also to build a trustworthy culture at the workplace. They also provide opportunity to the others for building their professional growth and also give power and authority to the others to carry out their employment responsibility in a successful manner (Liden and et.al., 2014). This philosophy states that how a worker interacts with the other either with their superiors or fellow members with the objectives of having authority not the power. In this, leaders targeted at promoting the well-being of the people by leading, directing and motivating them perfectly towards their job duties and responsibilities. It lay emphasizes on the empathy, stewardship, effective listening to their subordinates and professional and personal commitment towards job targets.
This leadership practice evolves towards the stronger interaction between management and people rather than putting excessive and stronger control over their daily or routine functioning, so that, synergistic relationship, collaborative environment and strong bonding can be ensured. It focused to build authoritarian relationship between workers and employers. This theory put the requirement, desire and needs of other people at the top most priority and lead employees accordingly which makes an effective contribution in exceeding their expectations, so that, workforce feel encouraged and put outstanding efforts (May, 2016). In order to become a servant leader, leaders require several qualities such as value driven opinion, trustworthy culture, encouragement, employee empowerment, humility and things long-term planning. With the help of this, leaders can easily encourage their workforce to give their best as they are invited in decision-making and also given leading opportunities for their professional advancement and growth.
Implementing the principles of servant leadership in the case study
In the cited case study, the principles of servant leadership can be incorporated as follows:
- Listening: Being a servant leader, it is essential to demonstrate strong communication & decision-making skills via listening their employees with a deep commitment. It will enable leaders to identify the reasons for workplace conflicts so that right decisions can be taken on time.
- Empathy: Although currently Bob’s performance shows a negative results, still, he was an excellent sales manager therefore, he must be valued for his unique performance (Argenti, 2015).
- Awareness: Self-awareness will assist me to understand the problems facing by Sam and John and created physical fight among them. Moreover, it also aware about the Bob’s financial condition why he is working late night.
- Foresight: This principle assists leaders to learn from the historical experiences and forecast their likelihood impact on the firm.
- Persuasion: Servants leaders convinced all the parties with the decisions made rather than positional authorities, so that, their relationship & bonding can be strengthened. With this, leader can resolve the conflicts took place between Sam and John and create collaborative environment (12 Principles of Servant leadership, 2014).
- Stewardship: It refers to the willingness of leaders to contribute towards the betterment and professional growth of the people through regular supervision and caring of the workers.
- Growth: This principle aims at improving commitment of the workforce exceeding their contribution made for maximization of sales. Rendering growth opportunities to all the sales team leads to boost their motivational level as they are being invited to give suggestions and build their professional growth.
- Spirit development: Honest praise and performance recognition of all the Sam, John and Bob’s performance develop collaborative spirits at a high growth.
Report concluded that time-management, stress management, team-working and business etiquettes are the best ways for the managers to resolve conflicts and create collaborative culture. Moreover, report founded that empathy, persuasion, stewardship, value driven opinion, listening etc. are the principle which enable manager to implement servant leadership style for leading the sales staff successfully.
Books and Journals
- Argenti, P.A., 2015. Corporate communication. McGraw-Hill Higher Education.
- Chase, J.A.D. and et.al., 2013. Time management strategies for research productivity. Western Journal of Nursing Research. 35(2). pp.155-176.
- Dougherty, D.S. and Goldstein Hode, M., 2016. Binary logics and the discursive interpretation of organizational policy: Making meaning of sexual harassment policy. human relations. 69(8). pp.1729-1755.
- Folkman, S., 2013. Stress: appraisal and coping. Springer New York. pp. 1913-1915
- Harvey, P., 2014. Securing the right to employment: Social welfare policy and the unemployed in the United States. Princeton University Press.
- Johnston, M.W. and Marshall, G.W., 2016. Sales force management: Leadership, innovation, technology. Routledge.
- Liden, R.C. and et.al., 2014. Servant leadership and serving culture: Influence on individual and unit performance.Academy of Management Journal. 57(5). pp.1434-1452.
- Mukerjee, H.S., 2013. Business Communication: Connecting at Work. Oxford University Press.