Within organizations, there is inevitably conflict between supervisors and their subordinates and also between team members and peers. However, sometimes there are individuals who are destructive in their behavior because of their leadership style and personality traits (Wright et al., 2017). Workplace bullying is a real problem in organizations and can cause physical and psychological health issues for employees who are being harassed (Branch & Murray, 2015).
This blogpost takes insights from several CQ Dossiers on teams and introduces a simple step-by-step guideline on what to consider when seeking to solve workplace conflict - useful for all working professionals. While the blogpost mentions teams, these insights can also be applied to one-on-one relationships at the workplace. Simply replace “team” with “organization” or “employer-employee-relationship”.
There are countless pieces of advice when it comes to improving work that relate to becoming more productive, efficient, profitable, happy, etc. While much of the advice available for free is not rooted in solid evidence, one of the main scientific assets to understanding workplace improvement is behavioral science. There is a breadth of evidence, even entire academic disciplines, which suggest that insights from psychology in particular are directly correlated to improving internal and external relations and practices at work. This blogpost highlights some of the main direct and indirect influences of behavioral science at the workplace and highlight how many principles can easily be implemented to much success.
Life as a working professional involves taking risks, enduring frustrations, and recuperating in the face of failure. However, not all people are born with a high level of emotional resilience, nor is everyone given the training and support to develop it later in life. As a manager, however, you can take individual and organization-wide steps to foster employee resilience. While some individual employees will always be more naturally resilient than others, with proper supports in place your entire team can be resistant to set backs, and motivated in the face of challenge and change.
In the wake of the #MeToo Movement, more and more industries are grappling with the fact that sexual harassment is both a widespread and under-reported phenomenon (Khomami, 2017; Jagsi, 2018). Numerous victims, of a variety of genders, have suffered in silence for years while supervisors and colleagues subjected them to unwanted sexual attention. Now, suddenly, accusations are being made public, and victims are being met with greater public understanding and empathy.
For the past few decades, psychological researchers have been aware of a phenomenon called ego depletion: the wearing down of willpower and self-control. The most common understanding of the subject holds that willpower is a finite resource, which can be used up or exhausted over the course of a single day (Baumeister et al, 1998). This has been supported by research showing that when a person is asked to exert a ton of willpower (for example, by ignoring loud noises to complete a difficult task), they make more impulsive decisions afterward.
When workers are absent from work, this can cause many problems for organizations. Although organizations expect employees to take time off for doctor appointments and sickness, excessive absenteeism can lead to decreased productivity (Forbes, 2013). One of the best competitive advantages for organizations is the people that they hire. When talent is absent from work, this can have a deleterious effect on organizational effectiveness. A survey of European countries conducted by Eurofound revealed that, on average, rates of absence across Europe are between 3% and 6% of working time. Taking this into consideration makes absenteeism rate a hidden champion key performance indicator (KPI) for productivity, employee engagement and leadership effectiveness. This blog post discusses the causes and costs of absenteeism as well as how to measure and reduce it.
One of the current “trends” in the science of management is examining employees’ resilience. Like “emotional intelligence” and “grit” before it, “resilience” has become a desirable and much-discussed quality that hiring managers seek and leaders work to increase (Leadbeater, Dodgen, & Solarz, 2005). This is not without reason – resilience has been found to predict long-term success in a variety of fields (Klohen, 1996).