14  Grievance and disputemanagement

The problem of grievance procedures is that nobody loves them! The problem of grievances is that they are, for managers, so easy to disregard. In a sense, the first situation is a result of the latter. Managers find it all too easy to attribute grumbles to troublemakers or disputes to the ‘six of one, half a dozen of the other’ category, before investigation. To some, ‘good people’ don't have problems — but they do. To many managers the formal grievance procedure is an unwanted rival to their ‘I'm always approachable’ authority. Given the complexity of negative behaviour discussed in Chapter 4, some sympathy is due to management in this respect. However, managers cannot simply look the other way or rely entirely ...

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