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Nine reasons employees may lodge a grievance against you

by , 20 January 2014
A grievance is a complaint an employee makes about something at work that he isn't happy with. Employees may lodge a grievance for the following reasons...

There are a number of reasons which may cause your employee to be unhappy and lodge a grievance. These are a few examples…

Employees may lodge a grievance for the following reasons

#1: Incompatibility

For example, two employees share an office. Employee A's extremely untidy which drives B mad. Despite chatting to him, A refuses to do anything to improve his habits.

#2: Unsatisfactory working conditions

Example: An employee complains about the noise in the area where he works.

#3: Unfair implementation or non-implementation of company policies or procedures by a manager or supervisor

Example: It's your company policy that employees can't take leave before or after a public holiday. But one manager lets employee A do this. But, at the same time, he refuses to let employee B do the same.

#4: Unfair treatment by a manager or supervisor

Example: A manager disciplines an employee for coming in late. But everyone knows there's a train strike and the employee had no control over the situation.

#5: Harassment, such as sexual or racial harassment

Example: A manager tells a secretary she won't get an increase if she doesn't perform a sexual favour.

#6: The attitudes, values or prejudices of managers or other employees.

Example: A manager makes an anti-Semitic joke amongst a group of employees. One of them is Jewish, the others aren't.

#7: Rumours about topics that affect employees.

Example: The talk around the office is that the new boss feels the cold quickly and will no longer allow employees to turn the air-con on. You're in an open plan office with five other people. This will affect all you.

#8: Failure to acknowledge proposals the employee makes.

Example: John's boss often asks employees to come up with new ideas to save costs. He suggests a way that guarantees a way to save on stationery. He doesn't even acknowledge John's ideas. This happens often.

#9: Failure to deal with issues the employee raises

Example: Failing to act on a number of requests for someone to check the safety equipment.

The bottom line: It doesn't matter what the grievance is about. The point here is you must have a grievance procedure so you can resolve a grievance before it turns into a major dispute.

You need to take the complaint seriously and investigate if what your employee is saying is true. If it is, you need to take action against the culprit, says the Practical Guide to Human Resources Management.

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