Stop Pushing the Punishment Default Button

Too often, the determination of just cause and application of discipline is not straightforward. This discussion paper explores why managers have such difficulty dealing with these kinds of situations, and provides a decision-making tool that can significantly reduce the need for discipline, while increasing the opportunity for positive, development-focused approaches for corrective action. It also reviews some of the very persuasive arguments that have been brought forward in recent years regarding why a new understanding and new resolution strategies are needed. Further, the paper builds a case for organizations and unions working together to adopt these new approaches.

Individual Employee Performance Management in Union Environments: The Emperor goes to Abilene

Why is there no consensus about best practices for managing individual employee performance (IEP) in unionized workplaces? This paper discusses the reasons, investigating the success of collectivist or high-performance work systems; why managers and unions need to address IEP issues and what’s in it for them; what academic research says about best practices; and workable strategies for managing IEP.

Employee Performance and Discipline Problems: A New Approach

Over the past two decades innovative high-performance work systems have produced substantial improvements in the quality of working life and organizational effectiveness. But while the organization development literature is full of analyses of these initiatives, it does not deal in detail with the problem of managing employee performance and disciplinary problems within the context of the new high-performance systems. This study helps to fill the gap by providing a detailed guide for developing a new approach to diagnosing and resolving performance and discipline problems, an approach that avoids the vicious adversarial cycle of traditional punitive methods and encourages management and labour to collaborate in finding responsible solutions for their mutual benefit.

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