Let’s face it – the success of any organization depends on how well its employees perform and how motivated they are to sustain good performance. Regardless of the type of organization – how employees feel about their jobs, their supervisors, their peers and the organization itself affects their productivity and ultimately – the ability of the organization to achieve its goals.
There are a number of factors that can contribute to conflict in the workplace or to less than optimal work performance by employees. Here are just a handful…they may sound familiar:
1) Limited resources. Given the reality of current economic environment, people are being asked to do more with less. This often leads to conflicts over things like workload distribution, equity, time, money and working conditions.
2) Lack of clarity. When employees do not clearly understand what is expected of them and how their work performance will be evaluated… it can lead to stress, anxiety and a lack of motivation. Also, when lines of authority and boundaries are not clearly defined, it can lead to “turf wars”.
3) Organizational change. Changes happen frequently in the workplace – whether it’s a big change (downsizing to a smaller workforce) or small change (minor shift in job duties) it can have a negative impact on the employee if they are not properly prepared or supported during times of transition.
4) Failure to communicate. Poor communication often results in misunderstanding and disharmony in the workplace. Lack of accurate information can also result in non-productive behaviors such as gossip, speculation and spreading of rumors.
5) Power struggles. Departments and divisions often have different or worse…competing goals and priorities. This can lead to people wrestling for power and control which is very often a recipe for employee conflicts.
Without some type of formal process, it is extremely difficult for managers to find out how their employees are thinking and feeling about their work climate. In our experience, most employees are reluctant to communicate anything but positive information to their supervisors and managers. Doing a simple anonymous survey does not go far enough as they rarely provide the quality of information needed for decision-making. By providing employees an opportunity to speak with an experienced, independent, neutral, workplace interventionist, employers can gain unique insights into what is contributing to (or detracting from ) their employees’ work performance.
An organizational conflict assessment is not about determining who is right or wrong – or to assign blame. Even the highest functioning organizations have room to improve. The primary purpose of an assessment is to identify and strengthen existing approaches which are working well and to recommend appropriate interventions to address areas where improvement could benefit everyone. TRC’s Assessment Team will suggest strategies that have proven successful in other work environments with similar challenges and provide ongoing coaching and training if needed.
TRC’s senior team are all professional mediators and workplace interventionists with many years of experience in assessing organizational climates and helping to facilitate positive change. We assist people at all levels of an organization to examine policies, practices, communication patterns and other key factors to determine what is working well and what might be contributing to a less than optimal work climate.
TRC has worked with organizations of all types and sizes from 5 employees to 10,000. The types of organizations we have worked with include:
Federal and State Agencies
Schools (Elementary, Secondary & Higher Ed)
Municipalities and Municipal Boards
TRC prides itself on setting reasonable, affordable rates and will tailor its services to meet the budgetary needs of the client. We also have reduced rates for schools, government agencies and non-profits. Call or e-mail for a free, no obligation quote.
The Resolution Collaborative, LLC
154 Waterman Street, Suite 8
Providence, RI 02906