If you’re looking for some strategies on how to be fair in the workplace, then you’ll love this article.
Fairness is a subjective concept that refers to an action that is just or appropriate. Fairness is seen as a difficult and unique trait in both leaders and partners.
Even though the world is not always black and white or good and bad, you can increase your chances of being fair in the workplace by giving others the time and attention they deserve.
How To Be Fair In The Workplace:
1. You should expect all your employees to perform at the same level.
Understandably, it can be difficult to refuse favouritism at work.
One employee may constantly pay attention to you, praise you, and even bring you baked goodies, while another may be cold and distant. However, this does not mean that it is fair to allow the nicer employee to leave an hour earlier, while the less pleasant person has to stay late.
If you want to be fair, you need to assess your biases towards certain employees and ensure that everyone is treated equally.
Consider why you prefer one employee over another. If you feel that one of the less liked employees is not putting in as much effort as you expect, it is better to have an open discussion with them about this rather than punish them.
If you favour some employees over others, they will perceive you as unfair and will resent working with you more. Favouritism is discouraging; fairness creates a pleasant, supportive atmosphere.
2. Set a good example.
If you want to be a fair employer, you need to be a role model for your employees. You will need to set an example of what you want to see from them in terms of hard effort, passion and teamwork.
Employees won’t respect you and won’t believe you are treating them right if you tell them one thing and then do something completely different. If you want to be fair, you can’t be hard on your employees while being soft on yourself.
Employees are more likely to dislike you if they think you are not fair.
3. Prepare the ground.
Another way to be a fair employer is to be clear about the rules. When employees feel their employer is unfair, it’s usually because they don’t understand what is expected of them.
If you have specific limits on what you want your employees to produce, instead of getting upset or disappointed when they don’t achieve them, tell them what you expect. If you have specific goals for a new project, write them down so the team knows what you expect rather than guessing.
The more expectations you can set, the clearer your guidelines will be. Your policies will seem less haphazard and more fair if you have a document, email, report or other document you can refer to when employees have questions about your expectations.
If you’ve changed your standards and expectations, you should let your employees know ahead of time, not surprise them after the fact. They will respect your honesty and think you are being fairer as a result.
4. Don’t let your own biases influence your choices.
If you want to be fair, you must be objective when hiring new employees, firing current employees, delegating responsibilities (1), assigning people to projects, or just in your day-to-day work.
When recruiting potential employees, you can’t just hire the people who are most like you; you have to hire the most qualified people; you can’t fire someone just because they don’t like you, but because they behaved badly.
The key is to keep an eye on yourself and make sure you are acting within the law.
Of course, being completely objective is impossible. But practising monitoring yourself during the decision-making process can help you to be fairer.
If you’re leaning towards one candidate for a job, consider whether you’re doing so because you think they’re best qualified, not because they’ve praised you the most. If you are unhappy with a report submitted by one employee, consider whether it stems from a conflict with that employee.
5. Give your employees the freedom to express themselves.
Although being a boss involves setting rules, if you want to be fair, you must also allow your employees to express themselves.
Find time to meet individually with your employees, ask for feedback if necessary, and show a genuine interest in what they think and feel. While you don’t want to be pushy, listening to your employees can help you create a fairer atmosphere and run your business more efficiently.
Making time for your employees will make them perceive you as more fair.
Instead of making it seem like you’re too busy to meet with them regularly, make an effort to get their point of view on how the company operates; this will make them feel more heard.
If you set rules and requirements without taking the employee’s experience and views into account, you risk gaining a reputation for being unfair.
Of course, there are situations where only you can determine what is best for your business and you cannot rely on your employees to do so. Even so, it may seem unfair if you know that an employee could offer valuable insight into an issue and you choose to ignore them.
6. If you have made a mistake, apologise.
Just because you are the boss doesn’t mean you are perfect.
An apology is only fair if you have mistreated one of your employees, made an oversight, or otherwise made a mistake during the workday. Your employees won’t believe it’s fair that you set high expectations for them while not taking responsibility for your own mistakes if you sweep them under the rug.
If you have made a bigger mistake that affects multiple employees, you may have to apologise to them in front of the group.
Act as if you are self-conscious and want to improve, rather than acting as if you did nothing wrong. Your employees will believe that you are fairer if they see that you have a strong sense of right and wrong.
7. Don’t let fairness consume you.
While being a fair boss is important to keep employees happy and the company running smoothly, one study found that adhering to “procedural fairness,” which includes removing personal biases from situations with employees, incorporating feedback and avoiding shortcuts, among other things, causes mental fatigue in managers (2).
While you should still be fair, you should also make sure that your desire to be fair does not exhaust you, otherwise you will not be able to make sound business decisions. Fairness is essential, but just as important is having time to relax. “
To prevent being exhausted, get adequate sleep, eat energising meals, take breaks during the working day and try not to think about work after 7 p.m. This will keep you feeling energised while allowing you to be a fair employer.
Familiarise yourself with employment laws if you want to be fair in your work.
Most states have employment laws designed to promote equality and eliminate discrimination based on race, gender, or other criteria. Following these laws can help you make a more informed choice, and it is usually illegal not to follow them.
It is important to remember that ‘fair’ does not always mean ‘equal’. Sometimes you need to give people credit. They may not have the same advantages as others.
I want to thank you for taking the time to read my article about how to be fair in the workplace. I sincerely hope its contents have been a good help to you.