Regardless of industry, there is one key tenet that all companies should always live by: fair treatment. As tedious and tiresome as it may sound to constantly strive to be a fair manager or executive, this effort can ultimately yield significant benefits for your organization. These advantages include increased employee engagement and retention. Here is a close look at this subject.
4 Employee Fair Treatment Principles
Although there are several fair treatment principles you can adopt as a business leader, here are four, in particular, to remember, especially as many companies transition to remote work formats.
Establish Common Rules
One of the first things you can do to ensure fair treatment of all your employees is to establish a set of common rules and clearly explain them to each worker. These “rules,” which can be outlined in company-provided seminars and documents, should address:
- Disciplinary action
- Criteria for performance reviews
- Promotions, raises, and bonuses
- Qualification for certain benefits
This alone can help create a notable sense of trust between you and your employees.
Give Every Employee A Voice
The fairest organizations allow every employee —- regardless of characteristics such as rank, race, or gender —- to speak up and voice their concerns (or simply share their ideas). If an employee’s (or group of workers’) grievances are consistently ignored, this can easily lead to resentment and distrust of upper management. Strong companies have systems in place to give workers the opportunity to be heard. These include surveys and meetings with human resources representatives.
Give Workers Due Credit
Another essential way of ensuring fair treatment in your organization is to give workers credit for their ideas. If an employee is recognized for his/her contribution to a project, he/she will likely have greater motivation to remain engaged in his/her work. If workers are never acknowledged for their actions —- or if another employee takes credit —- they may have second thoughts about staying with the company long-term. It should not always be up to your employees’ colleagues to give each other credit. You, as a boss, should also regularly praise your employees for high-quality work.
Care About Your Employees’ Well-being
A crucial aspect of fair treatment in the workplace involves having a genuine concern for your employees’ mental and physical health. If a worker appears to be gravely ill or severely emotionally distressed, allow them to take the day off. Additionally, you should ensure that every employee has a safe workspace and has a healthy work-life balance.
Remember: fairness isn’t simply about paying employees the same wages for equal work or providing all workers with the same training opportunities and chances to receive promotions and benefits. It’s about ensuring that no worker is ever given preferential treatment for any reason, except in a few specific cases. For example, an employee who is in a wheelchair (or who has any other type of disability) may likely need certain accommodations offered to him/her in order to perform his/her duties.
Fair treatment can have a greater impact on employee turnover than you may imagine. According to the Work Institute’s 2020 Retention Report, 12% of employees in 2019 quit for manager behavior-related reasons, including poor treatment and lack of support. However, the report also showed that, since 2010, improved manager fairness has led to an overall decrease in employee turnover, unlike other reasons. Additionally, HR services company Randstad named lack of recognition as one of the top five reasons for employees leaving a job in a 2018 report. In total, 27% of workers cited this as their primary reason for leaving a company.
Speak To The Professionals At HR Search & Rescue About Fair Treatment
Reach out to the experts at HR Search & Rescue for more information about fair treatment in the workplace and why it is so important. We are an independent HR consulting firm dedicated to helping employees, employers, and HR professionals in Northern Virginia with a variety of workplace-related issues. Our team provides both one-on-one meetings and group consultations to discuss and resolve these problems.
HR Search & Rescue’s professionals are highly knowledgeable about the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which protects employees from unfair treatment practices regarding wages and hours worked, among other things. If you are not being treated fairly at work, you should document how your superiors treat you (by collecting emails, memos, etc.) and inform a trusted family member or friend. You should also report this treatment to an HR professional.