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Conflict in the workplace

TK Maxx makes use of several methods to resolve conflict in the workplace, which may occur between employees or between employees and managers. TK Maxx has established their disciplinary procedures to help resolve and avoid conflict in the workplace. It helps to motivate employees to treat other employees in a fair and equitable manner in a disciplinary situation. The levels of action include: verbal warning (step 1), first written warning (step 2), final written warning (step 3) and dismissal (step 4).

Some examples of behaviour that constitute gross misconduct which may trigger the disciplinary procedure include stealing. For example, some associates are de-motivated in the workplace and as a result, steal from the company due to no satisfaction from a job. This can interfere with the company aims and objectives such as ‘to reduce stock loss through stealing or damage’. The disciplinary procedure can help to avoid such misconduct from employees, because they do not want to put their employment at risk.

Also, this disciplinary procedure can be used to resolve conflict. Behaviour such as theft and fraud in TK Maxx by associates, can lead to summary dismissal. For instance, an associate assisted another associate to steal by crediting store credit vouchers for

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themselves when the store manager was absent. However, they were detected by store ‘CCTV footage’ recorded, and were dismissed as a result. This suggests how the disciplinary procedures can resolve conflict in the workplace, as well as avoid it.

Absenteeism is another conflict issue in the TK Maxx workplace. This is an indication of de-motivation in the workplace and can cause conflict with managers. It usually occurs in TK Maxx when employees are refused to take holidays at a certain time. For instance, a team colleague was firstly given permission to take time off work and when the time came, there was a different manager at the time and he refused him to go. As a result, he was absent for one day.

This can be a problem because absenteeism in TK Maxx can hold the firm back from achieving company aims such as ‘To reduce annual turnover’, as unacceptable long periods of absenteeism can lead to the dismissal of employees, and so more money has to be invested into replacing those dismissed. As a result, to resolve the situation, I suggest that TK Maxx develops schemes in which to reduce absenteeism and eventually annual turnover, such as withholding pay like the company ‘Tesco’. However, ‘Taylor’ believed that workers were lazy and were only interested in earning money, so if pay was taken away from TK Maxx associates, they would be lazy and therefore de-motivated to come to work with the absence of pay.

Dishonesty can also cause unnecessary conflict among TK Maxx managers and associates. It can also be an indication of de-motivation in the workplace. Associates may attempt to defend their job with the company by lying about something. For instance, when it comes to theft, they may say things such as the person stealing was not him or her, or accuses the associate accomplice in stealing the company goods of stealing it. As a result, to resolve the situation, I suggest that TK Maxx warns their employees about the presence of the ‘CCTV’ technology, to help avoid lying in the future.

CONCLUSION

To conclude, TK Maxx makes use of both financial (e.g. company discounts) and non-financial incentives (e.g. socialising opportunities) to attract employees and keep them satisfied so they do not leave the business. These form the motivation of the employees. When it comes to the motivation of the employees, there are three main theories that managers use to motivate them to their maximum potential.

‘Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs’ explains that all people are motivated by the same things, and their lower needs (like safety) have to be met before advancing to higher needs (like self-esteem). Herzberg’s ‘Hygiene Factors’ are a more straightforward version of ‘Maslow’s’ theory. He splits Maslow’s motivation into two and suggests that the lower needs form job satisfaction (hygiene factors), like job security. The higher needs encourage employees to excel in the workplace (motivating factors). He concluded that it is the hygiene factors form the foundation for motivation factors to occur.

Finally, McGregor’s ‘Theory X and Theory Y’ believed that different managers’ styles motivate employees in different ways. For example, an authoritarian manager motivates more with financial gain, whereas a democratic manager motivates more with praise.

As a result, my alternative suggestions have clashed with all these theories, emphasising that there is not one prominent theory since they are all at work at the same time. For instance, Taylor’s Scientific Management theory claims that it is money that solely drives people to come to work, whereas I am not motivated alone by just pay due to the tediousness of doing repetitive tasks such as applying security tags to clothing for several hours, since I gain work fringe benefits like discounts. Therefore, it must more than just money that keeps me encouraged working for TK Maxx.

However, in the firm there are leadership styles like the strict ‘Authoritative’ style and conflict in the workplace among employees and managers. These form the de-motivation of the employees. As a result, it is vital that TK Maxx adapts the correct style for certain situations and demands of the workplace, to maximise the motivation and team performance of TK Maxx.

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