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Most supervisors know conflict is normal in the workplace, and responding to conflict is part of a supervisor's job, but there are important guidelines. It is not necessary to intervene in every conflict. On the contrary, it is usually better to leave employees alone and let them work it out. If supervisors involved themselves in every conflict, they would likely create more of them because it would send a message that employees need not cooperate, compromise, or work out power struggles with each other and instead let you work it out. These relationship skills can be undermined by the authority of a manager. A better tactic is often to monitor what is taking place. So, when should you intervene? Intervene when the issues pose some sort of larger risk to the organization, as in the case of harassment, discrimination, or potential for violence. Hold employees responsible for resolving conflicts. Never let them perpetuate. PAS can be a resource for supervisors when conflicts remain unresolved and you decide to speed up resolution by referring employees for additional help or getting a supervisor consult for more resources.

In years gone by, your approach may have been commonly recommended. However, in today's world of work, not taking action after being informed of offensive and hostile behavior is usually viewed by courts as a failure to act and negligence. Likewise, procrastination or putting off investigating the matter can be seen as apathy. This is why sexual harassment policies support employees going to the next level of management when lodging complaints. It's better to ask, "How do I act now in order to get a fast, fair resolution regarding this incident?" Think speed and responsiveness. The employee should be offered support, and Personal Assistance Service can help. Referring the employee to PAS can reduce the risk to the organization and help employee manage any sort of emotional issues brought on by the incident.