Here's a FREE selection of articles that address many different problems and situations in your workplace.
WHEN A PERSON IS CALLED ON THEIR COMMENTS OR JOKES,
THEIR RESPONSE IS "IT'S ONLY A JOKE" OR “CAN'T YOU TAKE A JOKE?”
A WOMAN IN A MALE DOMINATED WORKPLACE GETS LESS THAN KIND
COMMENTS FROM THE GUYS AND WHEN ASKED ABOUT IT QUIETLY,
SHE SAYS IT DOESN'T BOTHER HER, OR SHE CAN TAKE IT
ASKING A PERSON WHO IS CONSIDERED A "MINORITY"
TO DO TASKS OTHERS ARE REQUIRED TO DO, YET THEY CRY FOUL
EMPLOYEES WHO MAKE DISPARAGING COMMENTS ABOUT MANAGEMENT AND MANAGERS WHO MAKE DISPARAGING COMMENTS ABOUT UNIONS, GENERALLY
WHEN SEVERAL EMPLOYEES MAKE DEROGATORY COMMENTS ABOUT
ANOTHER EMPLOYEE, WHO IS NOT PRESENT, AND OUTSIDE OF WORK
WHEN SOMEONE TELLS A JOKE, MOST PEOPLE LAUGH, BUT IT'S INAPPROPRIATE, ESPECIALLY FOR ONE PARTICULAR EMPLOYEE, BUT NO ONE SAYS ANYTHING
WHEN EMPLOYEES DON'T WANT TO PICK UP THE SLACK BECAUSE A CHRISTIAN EMPLOYEE NEEDS TIME OFF FOR MASS AND WON'T WORK ON SUNDAYS
WHEN AN EMPLOYEE TAKES PART IN REPUGNANT, BUT NOT ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES, SUCH AS A WHITE SUPREMACIST GROUP, OUTSIDE OF WORK
YET NEVER SAYS OR DOES ANYTHING AT WORK
WHEN TWO EMPLOYEES WERE VERY GOOD FRIENDS, BUT HAD A PHYSICAL FIGHT OUTSIDE WORK AND NOW ONE OF THEM WON'T WORK WITH THE OTHER
OVER SOME OPEN FORM OF COMMUNICATION (RADIO OR GROUP EMAIL) AN EMPLOYEE STATES ABOUT ONE OF THE GUYS, "IT MUST BE THAT TIME OF THE MONTH" BECAUSE THIS FELLOW WAS BEING TOO EMOTIONAL
WHEN A WOMAN CAN’T DO THE SAME PHYSICAL WORK
A MALE CO-WORKER CAN DO, BUT IT’S ONLY A SMALL PART OF THE JOB
WHEN A PERSON APPEARS ALMOST RUDE IN EMAILS, BUT IN PERSON THEY COME ACROSS DIFFERENTLY – CONSIDERATE
WHEN SOMEONE WON’T TAKE “NO” FOR AN ANSWER – THEY HAVE EXHAUSTED ALL APPEALS AND PEOPLE DON’T SEE IT HIS WAY
WHEN SOMEONE IS AFRAID TO SAY ANYTHING TO SOMEONE WHO IS “DIFFERENT” FOR FEAR OF A COMPLAINT OR INSULTING THESE PEOPLE
PERSONS LOWER THEIR VOICES WHEN TALKING ABOUT SOMEONE WHO IS (WHISPER) “BLACK”
While this scenario is on someone’s own time, it’s still something that has gotten back to someone at work…or you are one of the people who is part of the group making the derogatory comments outside work and perhaps you don’t like what is being said. If the comments made outside work end up getting back to the person others are talking about, it could be considered harassment or bullying if it fits into one of the legal definitions. If it doesn’t go that far, it’s most likely to be hurtful (unless the person doesn’t really care about the opinions of those making the derogatory comments). In this situation, let’s assume you weren’t there when the comments were made, but you heard about them back at work…and we’ll assume what you heard was in fact true (the derogatory comments, not whether there is truth to what they said).
Talk to one or more of the people who made the comments and let them know that you are not going to interfere with what goes in their personal lives and on their personal time…especially if it has no negative impact back at work. But point out that if you heard about these comments, there’s a good chance others did as well, including the person they were speaking about. We’re not always going to have the courage, or desire, to speak directly to someone who is “bugging” them, but if there is a better alternative than to “blow off steam” behind a colleague’s back, perhaps they could improve the relationship by being direct with the employee they were speaking about.
“What you do on your own time is up to you and I’m not going to babysit everything you say and do outside work…however, since I heard about your conversation, there’s a good chance others will have heard it too, including the colleague you were speaking about. If you have a problem with this employee, I’d encourage you to talk to him directly. If it’s not that big a deal and you really don’t want to speak to this person directly, I’d suggest you not speak behind people’s back…in the same way you don’t want others to speak behind your back. And if you don’t want to control the conversations of others, you can at least do your part and not get involved, or try to steer the conversation towards more interesting discussions. Just a thought.”
Stephen Hammond, B.A., LL.B., CSP
If you have any questions, please contact Stephen.
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