Dealing with workplace harassment, bullying and discrimination to create a respectful workplace

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Here's a FREE selection of articles that address many different problems and situations in your workplace.

ARTICLES

 

We all know this type of person. One day they are fine, but the next day they aren’t. You don’t know if today is going to be a good day or a bad day, so everyone has to walk around as though they were walking on egg shells – fearing they will break at any moment.

 

This is very disruptive on most everyone at work. We don’t think one person can have such an influence on so many people, but this person does. There are times where a supervisor tells me that they are able to get a moody person to make change for a short time, but then he goes back to his old ways. In many cases nothing more is done to make on-going and lasting change.

 

If you’re dealing with a person who has some mental health issues, you’re going to have to find a way to address that. This is often difficult because no supervisor is expected to take on the task of doing a psychological assessment – in fact, you can’t and you don’t want to. But if you’ve tried everything you think is reasonable, you may have to suggest the employee talk to someone in an employee assistance program (if you have one) or another professional. It’s not easy to do and I strongly suggest you seek the advice of human resources or others at your workplace first.

 

For the other times, supervisors just have to do the work that must be done – that is, address the problem, set out expectations for change and then follow up.

 

TRY THIS:

 

Talk to the moody employee about specific behaviours. Stay away from “you always” or “every time,” unless it is every time the employee does something.  If the employee exhibits similar behaviours while you’re having this discussion, then point it out as an example that must be changed. Don’t assume a person can’t change unless you’ve given her the chance to change. But you must follow up and there must be consequences if the behaviour doesn’t change. Otherwise the employee will realize you’re not serious.

 

HOW ABOUT:

 

“When you stop talking to me and other employees because you’re upset, that doesn’t resolve your problem and it only makes it difficult for others to work with you. If you have a problem, I need to hear about it, or you need to talk to a colleague. Shutting down doesn’t help and it just makes things worse.”

 

“There are times when I ask you to do something or a co-worker asks you to do something. I’ve observed that you fly off the handle or get upset by these simple requests. That’s not the way I want us to interact with one another, so I need you to explain to me why you act this way. If there is something we can do to help, then we need to know, otherwise you need to find a way to accept normal requests at work.”

 

“Two months ago I spoke to you about your behaviour. I saw an improvement but that behaviour has come back and that needs to stop. If something has changed since we last spoke, then I need to know what needs to be done. Otherwise I need you to refrain from your inappropriate behaviour or I’ll have to impose discipline.”

 

 

Stephen Hammond, B.A., LL.B., CSP

 

If you have any questions, please contact Stephen.

#18

DEALING WITH AN EMPLOYEE WHO HAS MOOD SWINGS

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© STEPHEN HAMMOND - HARASSMENT SOLUTIONS INC.    
 
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Here's a FREE selection of articles that address many different problems and situations in your workplace.

Here's a FREE selection of articles that address many different problems and situations in your workplace.

© STEPHEN HAMMOND HARASSMENT SOLUTIONS INC.
 
  
 
CONTACT