I do not want you to lose your face

Don't lose your face

When the rela­ti­onship bet­ween an employee and her or his super­vi­sor or manage­ment turns sour, mutu­al trust is lost. Both sides have oppo­sing views on who is to bla­me. On the who­le, not so many job com­ple­te­ly fail. But if they do, the result quite often is a pain­ful and deman­ding situa­ti­on both for the employee and the supervisor/employer, cal­ling for careful atten­ti­on and good com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on. You gon­na lose your face. In the worst case, a con­flict can send shock waves through an orga­niza­ti­on, with peo­p­le tal­king bad about each other or even start­ing an inter­nal war, poten­ti­al­ly dama­ging the organization.

Protection of trust

My advice to manage­ment in such a situa­ti­on is to lea­ve no doubt that all employees – inclu­ding peo­p­le who­se jobs don’t go well – as part of the orga­niza­ti­on enjoy pro­tec­tion of trust. Gua­ran­te­e­ing pro­tec­tion of trust shouldn’t keep manage­ment from being quite clear about rules and expec­ta­ti­ons or even ter­mi­na­te a job if all else fails. What it does mean, though, is that manage­ment needs to take gre­at care to make sure that the employee does not lose her or his face, e.g. due to indis­cre­ti­ons or bad talk. It is deci­dedly in the inte­rest of the orga­niza­ti­on that con­flicts are being dealt with in a respon­si­ble and civi­li­zed man­ner, howe­ver dif­fi­cult that may be.