Disciplining employees is a crucial matter in every organization. Disciplined employees not just boost their productivity and performance but create good environment in workplace. Unfortunately, disciplinary issues are common problem faced by the employers. Be it arriving late or negligence at work, ultimately it hampers in organization's output. Basically, organization faces these four disciplinary problems in employees.
• Attendance: Arriving late for work and excuses are daily issues in organization. Moreover, absenteeism, abuse of sick leave, habitual tardiness, leaving work without permission are problems that HR needs to deal on daily basis.
• Job behavior: Negative attitude and behavior of employees create difficult work environment. Any employee that shows insubordination, create disputes and quarrels with the team and employer is alarming sign. Moreover, being careless in job and showing indifferent to the organization and destruct the organizational property is serious problem.
• Dishonesty: Any employee that is not loyal to the company and has no sense of ownership can be termed dishonest. Behavior like selling unauthorized company's property, falsification of information, concealing defective works are traits of employees that employer should be aware of.
• External activities: Leaking confidential information to competitors, criticizing management in public, organizing strike against management, baseless demands and groupism are activities that can damage the organizational reputation and goodwill earned in the market.
Discipline is important in the workplace as it helps supervisors to ensure that employees adhere to established company rules and policies. It allows them to correct unacceptable behavior and maintain good conduct in the company. It is necessary to have a strategically designed Discipline Policy to guide employees what is expected and what happens if they do not meet expectations.
There are measures on how to deal with disciplinary issues of staff depending the severity of their behavior.
• Corrective: In this approach, supervisors correct employees' undesirable behavior and show the right way of doing.
• Progressive: This approach is effective one to administer disciplinary issues of employees. Employees will be given sequence of warnings like oral, written, suspension and dismissal against violated discipline.
• Immediate action: Few discipline misconducts need to be reacted quickly. If the action is not taken immediately, it can disrupt the working environment of the company.
• Unbiased: It is crucial to have unbiased judgment before announcing punishment. Discipline Policy can guide well on this regard. While taking action, employers should not favor anyone and everyone should be given chance to explain their position.
• Effective: The action taken to anyone should be transparent. There should be proper answer of what was the mistake committed and what has been done.
We always want to maintain discipline environment in the workplace. We expect good behavior, punctuality, following company's rules and policies, maintaining secrecy and honest employees. But being employer or in management team, we forget that Discipline Policy is for all. We expect from our employees but we do not judge ourselves whether we are following or not. Discipline is what is followed by the leaders, which will automatically narrate down to employees. Lead with example is what goes best in maintaining discipline at workplace. So, start from yourself.
Authors: Mohan Ojha & Manohar Man Shrestha