March 14, 2022, by HR Search & Rescue A common talking point among HR circles as of late is equality in the workplace. Equal pay for equal work, equal treatment, equal opportunities, and so on. While equality is very important to consider, many employees are seeking fairness in the workplace as well. This helps to add a new dimension to the topic of equality that is becoming a popular topic in corporate America. Equality and fairness may seem to be the same things on the surface, but in reality, they are very different. It is important for businesses of all sizes to consider both of these traits equally when educating management regarding the fair treatment of employees. How To Start The Conversation When it comes to your management, it is essential to get on the same page as far as the overall atmosphere you wish to cultivate within your team of managers and/or supervisors. Employees expect you to make the workplace environment one where the office policies are clearly stated and applied equally to every member of the organization. Start by ensuring that management understands, clearly, what the main goals of teamwork and collaboration among employees should look like. So, how can companies and leaders ensure that their policies are providing opportunities for both equality and fairness? Understand The Difference Between Equality And Fairness As we mentioned, equality and fairness are not the same things. Equality is important, but this conversation leaves out the important role of the individual and each member clearly understanding their ability to contribute to the organization. Being fair, on the other hand, involves considering all the circumstances and making appropriate decisions based on those circumstances. Employees’ needs differ depending on their circumstances, and it is important to not skip out on this type of more focused, personalized attention to individual employees. Be Adaptable When educating management on fair treatment, it is essential to drive the point of adaptation home. All employees want to be valued. This makes it important for managers to understand that issues such as favoritism and rigid structures that stifle creativity can be detrimental if not balanced properly with equal opportunities and fair treatment. No matter what issues arise, if there is a balance between treating employees equally across the board and treating them fairly, management will be able to much more readily address a wide array of common workplace issues. Promote Collaboration And Responsibility When you promote fairness, you help employees focus on navigating the challenges in front of them with more motivation and open-mindedness. This promotes a better focus on working towards individual and group goals rather than competitiveness and avoidance. Teams that are able to be individually responsible while simultaneously helping to lift colleagues up and add to their process will be much more predictive than teams who are overly competitive and boxed in. Fair Treatment Benefits Every Manager And Employee Having a cohesive workplace where everyone clearly understands what is expected of them and what their unique role is should not be something of a fantasy to your workplace. It is very real and attainable with the right approach to management and the right company culture. Establishing the proper culture within your business starts at the top and requires a focused effort to ensure management is: Clear in their expectations Understanding and being patient with employees Focused on enforcing guidelines fairly and equally With this approach, employees will feel empowered and will have a clear path ahead of them to focus on their role while adding to the productivity of the organization at large. It’s never a bad time to start enacting some change in your organization, especially if you have been having troubles with innovation or teamwork within the different levels of your company. By understanding the difference between equality and fairness while ensuring a clear, consistent, and easy-to-understand directive from the top, you can properly educate your management on fair treatment and foster a more productive and great place to work. HR Search and Rescue is a full-service HR consulting company that strives to help organizations of all sizes address complex workplace issues. Reach out to their team today at 703-951-3105 or visit their website.