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How to avoid a workplace breakdown

How to avoid a workplace breakdown (Last Updated On: August 8, 2016)

A Sydney private school is a blazing with criticism this week after a very public deterioration of relationships and employment between the principle and her staff was exposed in the media and over social media.

The saga ultimately led to “a rebellion against leadership” and a hashtag run by students and parents has shamed the school, urging the principle to resign. 30 teachers will be leaving the school at the end of this year with many department heads and other teachers choosing to resign.

The question is how did things get this bad for the school?

Reports suggest that the school had questionable workplace practices, therefore they did not have the correct employment relations advice or they missed the importance of employment policies and procedures altogether.

Here are some ways that organisations can avoid a shaming and damaging situation like this example…

Change management

In any business there is always going to be change, whether it be to employment structures and the number of employees, employers need to respond appropriately. Change management during these times is critical. Ensure that the staff are all informed of change at the same time and provided the opportunity to respond. This creates unity in the group and encourages everybody to work together and be a part of the change.

Monitor moral

The moral of the group needs to be monitored. All negative aspects of change should be acknowledged. Address the issue before it escalates and impacts the whole company/business/client base. Constant streams of communication and reassurance will help.

Follow a fair process

Leaders need to be treating all employees fairly. Employers need to be conscious of any employees feeling discriminated against or hard done by. If you are dismissing employees employment policies and procedure should be adhered to.

Focus on staff retention

The school now has the costly exercise of replacing staff who have resigned due to the leadership and relationship breakdown. Our Managing Director Edward Mallett says that replacing people is costly and time-consuming. “Costs can add up with recruitment advertising, and there’s so much time invested to hire and train new employees. If it’s a sudden departure, other staff need to step in for their colleagues, compromising their own workload. The school would not have experienced the loss of 30 staff in one year had they been focusing on retention. 

If you are currently experiencing relationship problems between employees or if you are unsure of how to tackle change management appropriately in your business, call Employsure on 1300 651 415. Our highly qualified employment relations specialists are on hand 7 days a week to support employers going through problems similar to the prime example above. Call us today to see how we can make a difference to your business.

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