How to Support & Stand Behind Your Employees

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  • 0:02 Getting to Know the Employee
  • 1:14 Needs Assessments
  • 2:13 Resolving Conflict
  • 3:08 Open Communication
  • 3:35 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Lesley King

Lesley has taught ESOL for many years, holds a master's degree in curriculum and instruction, and a doctorate degree in Instructional Leadership.

In this lesson, you will learn how to build supportive working relationships with employees. You will also learn tips for maintaining good practices of communication, understanding needs, and making ethical decisions.

Getting To Know the Employee

When a person is in a position of power, they sometimes forget to see those who they are leading as real people. In other words, it's considered strictly business and all work with no play. In situations such as these, leaders must take the time to look at the employees from a wide perspective. There must be a way to balance formal and informal interactions and still lead the organization professionally.

It's fine for leaders to ask surface-level questions about employees' families. Surface-level questions are questions that do not go to a personal level that could be considered invasive - that could make an employee uncomfortable. A leader could ask a question like, 'How are things coming along with the event that you were planning?' This shows that the leader sees him or her beyond just a worker.

Other types of surface level questions might be, 'How old is your son now?' or 'Does he still play baseball?' This approach is not being too personal, but it can bring openness between the leaders and group members. Finally, in an instance where a worker needs to leave work for a family emergency, leaders can show support by having procedures in place to cover their position.

Needs Assessments

Needs assessments are formal and informal methods for finding strengths and weaknesses. Once this information is clear, the leader of an organization can decide what steps need to take place to be supportive. Supporting the learner can be done by providing workshops to address topics of concern. These workshops can be led by someone from within the organization or an outside agency. The topics could be for morale, diversity, teamwork, or sensitivity towards others. Leaders should decide on topics based on surveys and dialogue among staff.

Another way to be supportive is to show a balanced approach when resolving conflict. Conflict often appears in workplace groups. This means that there is a problem within the group, which is possibly causing a delay in productivity. One way leaders can show fairness is by making honest decisions and recommendations. The leader must make sure that those involved in the conflict are heard and given solutions that work for moving past the problem.

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