Managing the Grievance Process

952 Words4 Pages
If you are like the majority of managers who operate within labor contracts then you can relate to the frustration that accompanies the grievance process. For the most part, grievance policies are set to be mediating faucets that allow for a clarification or even a compromise between employer and employees. Yet what takes place absent a clear understanding of the true purpose of grievances may be a whirlwind that brings about much aggravation and frustration among both parties. What follows are three effective methods in ensuring that your companie’s approach in dealing with grievances is not distorted or manipulated. When a employer is approached and informed of a grievance filing the initial step should be to professionally accept the grievance. A mistake many managers make is to evaluate the initial step of the grievance. Whether or not you feel that a grievance has merit or not should not come into play upon notification. An important note is to remember that anything you say or anyway you respond will most certainly become a part of the grievance. By maintaining your professionalism, you’ll be inline to sufficiently handle the grievance. Take a look at two sample approaches below: Scenarios: #1- Carol works at the local factory. She was docked for arriving to work five minutes late. Carol approaches her manager and states that she is filing a grievance to get her money back because she worked overtime the day before as a favor. In a situations such as this that appears to be “personal” may quickly be dismissed by a manager. Thus leading to possible increased aggressiveness on the part of Carol and a desire to get others involved. This would be an undesirable method of handling a grievance. The suggested approach in h... ... middle of paper ... ...itration, do not get angry or intimidated. Arbitration is costly and unions will only take the most intensely controversial grievance to this step. Stay the course. Do not respond to threats. Finally, after the employee/union have made their case, reiterate the policy (do not provide or mention any forms the employee has signed, not at this stage) and importantly, conclude the meeting. Do not go around and around allowing tempers to flare. Within the allotted time provide a formal short denial. In situations like these a union has very limited ground. While as a manager you strongly believed there was no merit to the grievance you recognized the grievance procedure and professionally handled the matter. You did not allow for any additional allegations to be added and essentially made the policy stronger by successfully handling a grievance on the matter.
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