One of the most challenging aspects of being a CEO is being fair to all your employees.  Even if you do your best to treat everyone equally, there are times when your decisions or actions are misconstrued as favoring certain people within the company to the exclusion of others.  

Your workers will begin to notice if they are required to abide by company rules, but select employees seem to get away with ignoring or disobeying them.  This is how workers become disgruntled.  They feel as though they are not being treated fairly—and, in this situation, they really are not.

How can you as CEO restore fairness among your workers?  Start by setting the tone for your whole company:  

First make sure that the rules themselves are fair.

Your company probably already has a set of rules for its employees, laid out in your employee handbook.  Check to see when that handbook was last updated.  If it was updated more than three or four years ago, go through all the regulations and see which ones actually fit your company now.

Most employees have no problem abiding by company rules.  The rules, however, should make sense.  As you are revising the company’s handbook, if you come across rules that create unnecessary work or waste employee time, consider deleting them.  For example, requiring employees to stand around waiting to be signed out long after their shift is done does not make sense. It only produces resentment and aggravation.  Find a way to speed up the process.  Also get rid of any archaic rules that no longer fit your company’s needs and instead devise new rules that streamline production and increase efficiency.   Rules like these make sense and seem fair to employees.

Included with the rules should be consequences for disregarding them.  These consequences must apply to all employees no matter how high up in the company they are or how long they have worked there.  Consequences can range from first and second warnings or being written up to suspension, docked pay, demotion or firing, depending on the type and severity of the rules broken.

Categories: Leadership

Romeo Effs

Romeo Effs is founder and CEO of Lumorus, a global consultancy that helps businesses and their leaders redefine their corporate governance and leadership to bring about positive, structural change. 


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