Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Encouraging Progressive Communication

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Encouraging Progressive Communication

Article excerpt

How many times have you had a manager come into your office to tell you so-and-so has got to go. This is the last straw. I can't deal with him anymore. Her attitude is terrible. His behavior is out of hand.

And, how many times have the employees who work for those managers come to you to say -- My supervisor never listens to me. He's out to get me. She's too demanding. I'll never get ahead. I've got to get out of here.

Seems like both sides are complaining about similar issues. What is causing the disconnect? Who's right? They all are, probably.

OK, what is the problem? Furthermore, what is the solution?

I'm not sure my crystal ball is always right, but I do know that part of the problem -- a big part of the problem -- is a lack of communication. Therefore part of the solution must be to provide more communication.

We've all heard about progressive discipline systems. They work. That is, they work when they're utilized correctly. And to get the maximum usage out of any system, users need to know how the system works and how it can be of benefit to them.

A progressive discipline system is nothing more than a way to encourage communication between managers and employees. Sometimes managers think that if they ignore a problem situation, it will go away. And sometimes that happens. But, more often than not, a problem ignored just gets worse.

Employees generally want to do a good job. They want to get promotions and raises. They want recognition of a job well done.

But sometimes along the way, they get sidetracked. Performance slips, attendance drops off, attention to detail is forgotten. It's possible that some employees don't even know that a problem exists, much less know what they need to do to fix it. Once a problem is identified, the employee may need additional time or training to fix it. But most of all, they need to understand what will happen if the problem doesn't get resolved. This is where progressive discipline comes into place. I realize the word discipline has negative connotations.

So, let's substitute the word communication. By utilizing a progressive communication system, managers should be able to help employees get back on track. …

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