How To Deal With Disrespect In The Workplace

April 14, 2022

How To Deal With Disrespect In The Workplace

Disrespectful behaviour in the workplace is not uncommon. However, many leaders fail to understand that without some form of intervention, disrespect often erodes workplace morale and productivity.

As the supervisor or the manager, it is up to you to make a difference whenever you experience or witness disrespect. Doing nothing about disrespect and harassment of all kinds is no longer an option for both employers and employees.

A small act of disrespect might seem like nothing to you and you might consider that the best way to deal with it is by letting it go. However, the cost of disrespect within the workplace is huge. It has emotional, psychological and financial impacts that start to unravel as a disrespectful workplace shapes up.

Unfortunately, many leaders fail to promote a respectful workplace which has an effect on the morale as well as the productivity of the employees. Keeping this in mind, at Mediation Services, we have carefully curated the “Building a Respectful Workplace” workshop that will provide participants with an opportunity to explore how to build respectful workplaces.

It is designed to be highly interactive, combining both theory and practice. Mediation Services workshops implement a broad range of techniques, including role-plays, lectures, videos, and small and large group discussions.

Objectives Of This Course

Participants attending this workshop will have the opportunity to:

  • Explore experiences of disrespect
  • Learn how to effectively respond and recover as source, target, and observer of disrespect in the workplace
  • Gain insight into the person in authority’s responsibility in maintaining a respectful workplace

The Costs Of A Disrespectful Workplace

A disrespectful workplace can lead to:

  • Higher rate of employee absenteeism
  • Higher rate of sick leave and short-term disability leave
  • Reduced productivity and reduced profitability
  • Increase in employee turnover
  • Increase in workplace stress
  • Potential litigation costs
  • Difficulty in recruitment and retention of employees
  • Decreased workplace morale
  • Strained workplace relationships
  • Reduced corporate image and customer confidence
  • Poor public relations
  • Decrease in the trust placed in management

Tools To Help You Deal With Disrespect

There are several tools you can use to deal with disrespect in the workplace. These are:

Crucial Conversations

A crucial conversation is characterized by three conditions:

  • High stakes
  • Opposing opinions
  • Strong emotions

They are extremely important to resolve issues like disrespect in the workplace. In spite of differences in opinions, crucial conversations can help strengthen relationships and teamwork by creating a high-performance culture based upon trust and respect.

Anatomy Of Behaviour

Looking at the anatomy of behaviour means deconstructing the moment of disrespect. The three elements in which the moment is deconstructed includes:

  • Intent
  • Action
  • Effect

Every time a person communicates, there is a public and private element. The public aspect is what we see and hear, the ‘action’. It is what a video camera would capture of the moment. The public element includes not only what is said but how it is said.

Usually, the private element, that is the intent, is ignored. However, it is as important as the public part of the communication. Hence, while dealing with disrespect, try to understand the person’s intent before jumping to conclusions.

Dealing With Disrespect

Many people who experience disrespect at the workplace choose to go with one of the following actions:

  • Let it go if they believe the other person does not think it is disrespectful
  • Ignore it if the behaviour is out of character for the person who is disrespecting them
  • Forward a complaint if it is a constant behavioural trait
  • Get even
  • Hold on to a grudge
  • Be forceful and snapback
  • Talk about it and sort it out

To understand more about how to deal with disrespect in the workplace, enroll in our workshop today.

About Us

Mediation Services in Winnipeg offers training programs to help you learn mediation and leadership skills. We conduct online zoom and asynchronous webinars for different issues. Such modules will help you to improve your communication and solve family, workplace, and personal conflicts. To check out our training courses, visit this link here or contact us for further assistance.

If you have questions,
please don’t hesitate to call.


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