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Office tensions affecting productivity? Put your grievance procedure to use!

by , 05 April 2013
Politicians are great at shooting the messenger. In the latest example of this, the country's developmental vision has become a source of conflict. Now, critics of the National Development Plan are 'attacking' Planning Minister Trevor Manuel. If similar tensions flare up regularly in your workplace, you'll need to make sure you have a clear grievance procedure in place.

Critics of the National Development Plan (NDP) have started to personalise the debate by attacking Planning Minister Trevor Manuel, says the Business Day's BDLive website.
Now, ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte says reckless attacks on the plan will chip away at its credibility. 
One way to deal with this type of conflict and tension in the office is to ensure your employees are aware of your company's grievance procedure.
This way, employees feel safe and you can stop a disagreement from escalating into a major issue that affects productivity, explains smallbusiness.chron.com.
Sometimes just reminding employees of the grievance procedure is enough to soothe tensions, as they'll feel calmer knowing they can bring any dissatisfaction or feeling of injustice in the workplace, says Labour.co.za.
Stop a dispute being taken to the CCMA or Labour Court with your grievance procedure!
To minimise the tension drawing out and souring the mood of the whole workplace, all grievances should be dealt with as soon as is practically possible.
Because 'you can even end up being taken to the CCMA or the Labour Court by your aggrieved employee, especially if he feels that nothing is being done to resolve his problem,' warns The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service.
That's why FSP Business recommends having a grievance procedure in your company, to deal with complaints before they turn into disputes. 
Worried you'll be overwhelmed by petty grievances? Make the grievance procedure as formal as possible
Typical grievances may be that the employee's supervisor is continually picking on him or conflict between the employee and a co-worker, says the LabourGuide.co.za.
By making the grievance procedure as formal as possible, insisting that the employees concerned and any witnesses attend, you'll be able to prevent petty issues like unhappiness over the quality of toilet paper provided in the office bathrooms from being addressed as grievances.
If office tensions are heating up, remind employees of the company's grievance procedure.
It's a great way to make sure everyone feels heard and that employees don't accuse you of taking sides from only listening to the aggrieved employee.

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