Running away from political discussions is an impossibility most companies can never fix. Political discussions are realities that companies have to deal with. When well handled, such discussions can be productive and healthy. However, if not well handled, political discussions can be stressors that workers have to deal with. Considering just how stressed a worker may be political, discussions may degenerate easily into violence. A survey conducted by the American Association survey in 2019 reports that negative political discussions impacted the workplace. As such, negative political discussions may lead to low productivity. There’s therefore great need to handle political discussions in a civil manner to promote a healthy environment.
Since political discussions are inevitable, employers need to build a mutual environment of trust and dependability to promote positivity at work. Some of the considerations for employers on steering political discussions in a healthy way include the following:
Work on employees’ expectations . There is a great need for employees to focus on how to promote employee expectations on political discussions in a civil manner. Employers can also work on policies that will promote a healthy political environment free from hate and prejudice. Furthermore, they can draft clear policies meant to direct political discussions, and the stand of the company on such discussions.
Encourage respect. It’s paramount for all employees to respect different and divergent views. Basically, there is no way all employees will agree on a topic. Accommodating divergent views without being cynical is the key to fostering civil political discussions. Employers’ key role is to encourage employees to respect each other and even disagree in a healthy way without having to get ridiculously personal.
Be exemplary. When employers take charge of upholding healthy political discussions, there’s a great likelihood that the employees will follow suit. Employers should not at any cost endorse certain political candidates or speak ill about their opponents while at the workplace. Employers are supposed to remain unaligned. Once an employer endorses a certain political figure, employees who may feel different will find it difficult to operate and speak up. This is a major stressor that can affect their productivity. Company behavior is majorly dictated by what employers do, and how they behave.
Organize sensitization sessions. Training sessions have a way that helps employees focus on togetherness and good working relations. Such sessions should focus on how to build trust and respect among co-workers. Similarly, employees should be assisted to understand the need to respect each other and focus on promoting a healthy political environment devoid of mistrust and suspicion. Strategies that can be impacted during such sessions can go a long way in promoting healthy relations among the employees of the company.
Equip employees with resources. Wellness programs and employee assistance programs (EAP) are vital in coping with the current hostile political environment. Employers have the responsibility of ensuring the employees are exposed to such resources that will help them hold and sustain healthy discussions. Employers should be made aware of the laws that govern specific speeches and forms of expression at the workplace. With such knowledge, employees will be better placed in their discussions, hence promoting civility at work.
As the political temperatures rise and politics takes center stage at the company life, there is a need to avoid creating hostile political environments. Key considerations should be placed on political tolerance and accommodation of divergent views. With the aforementioned strategies, any company can beat political negativity and work-related stress. Employees can always differ but in a civil way once these tips are put into serious review.