Managers must strive to treat all people fairly and equally. Most managers see themselves as being fair and equitable however that may not be the perception of their subordinates. It is human nature to like some people better than others or to get along more easily with certain people. From a managers perspective it’s very easy to favor a top performer over others. These natural inclinations are the challenge a manager must deal with in order to excel in getting the most from employees. Any person who is performing up to their potential should be treated as well as another person with greater potential.
Favoritism can be extremely counter-productive. Incentive can be nullified or even worse animosity can develop. The very objective of management – to build a team that will work in unison toward a common goal – can be defeated through inequitable treatment of employees. To achieve success in business managers must be cognizant of the human side of relationships and make sure all are treated fairly.
Conflict resolution can be very challenging when striving for equitable treatment of employees. Particularly in environments in which employees are encouraged to display initiative – resistance to proposed strategies may be encountered. Opposition may be valid or it may not. But in order to be fair the manager must evaluate the circumstances with an open mind and resolve the issue for the right reasons.
Self-evaluation is often practiced after failure occurs. In this context very little will be accomplished as a large percentage of cases in which subordinates feel as if they’ve been treated unfairly are never related to their superior. If a manager really wants to be successful at practicing equitable treatment of employees a proactive introspective approach is needed. An honest look at behavior and treatment of subordinates with the objective of improvement is the way to ensure fair and equitable treatment of all.