A policy structure should be developed multiple times under employment regulations to decide the steps to be taken if workers do not return to work. Guidelines for taking a day or days off should be provided for in the policy agreement signed during work by employees. Violation of contract conditions is an offense whether the employer or the employee does so (Hill, 2013). The contract or terms and conditions of employment should also indicate what workers must do when they cannot work because of disease (Hill, 2013). It is imperative that employers recognize their workers’ rights to take sick leave in this regard. “The Dispute between Kelly and Mr. Higashi
The cause of disagreement in the case study is compromising the employees’ sick leave. A good working environment requires that employees adhere to the right procedure for reporting their absence at work (Schliwen, Earle, Hayes & Heymann, 2011). Workers are required to communicate why they would miss their duties even when they are not feeling well. The standard procedure is getting a physician’s note when one gets back to work to ascertain that he or she was sick. When workers follow this rule to the letter, then their supervisors or their seniors should not have a reason to pin them down (DeRigne, Stoddard-Dare & Quinn, 2016). However, things are relatively different in the case study between Kelly and Mr. Higashi. The first problem that Kelly has with her supervisor is that he treats her like a high school student and not as an employee. When Mr. Higashi requests Kelly to carry with her the doctor’s note from the clinic, she never received it well because according to her, there was no need to seek medical attention just because of a mild flue.
Besides, things worsened when the supervisor failed to respect the terms of sick leave agreement as stipulated in the contract. Despite the fact that Kelly went further to get a note from the doctor, the supervisor still thought that she was faking illness just to extend the weekend. Kelly felt that Mr. Higashi compromised the law regarding sick leave when he made her sign the paid leave instead of the sick leave. According to Kelly, employees were entitled to sick leave depending on the situations they presented. Of course, the guideline requires the employees to give a prompt communication and inform their supervisors or employers on their illnesses within the set limits of time (DeRigne et al., 2016). Following this provision, it is clear that Mr. Higashi compromised it by failing to understand the situation of his juniors despite timely communication and availing evidence for their sicknesses. With all the aspects taken into consideration, there is no possibility for compromise based on the facts presented in the case.
Impact of Cultures in the Negotiation
Effective communication is always the backbone of a good employer-employee relationship. Regardless of the diversity of cultures between the cases, efficiently communicating would have helped solve the situation. Even if Kelly wanted to do things the Canadian way and Mr. Higashi the Japanese way, communicating promptly and efficiently would have made everything easier. Moreover, in effective communication, it is important for the employers or the supervisors to trust and respect the views of their juniors (Conrad, 2014). Failing to have an open communication between the employees in the case study and their supervisor creates more problems within the workplace.
The Tangible and the Intangible Factors in the Situation
Ostensibly, the right of employees is one of the most tangible factors in this situation. Upon signing the contract before embarking on work, there are policies and guidelines that both the employers and the employees are expected to adhere to, which cannot be underestimated in this situation. Like any other employee, Kelly and her counterparts are entitled to sick leave, which should not be a topic of discussion when they present proofs of their illnesses. The other tangible factor is lack of adequate or proper communication within the work environment. The evidence of miscommunication creates a wide gap between Mr. Higashi and the employees.
On the other hand, the intangible factor manifested in this situation is the national identity of both the supervisor and the workers. The fact that Mr. Higashi is a Japanese while Kelly is a Canadian does not mean that there should be diverse opinions regarding the contract terms. Instead, adherence to the terms of a contract should be the binding factor (Martin, 2014). Negotiating on the provisions of the sick leave and the paid leave is an intangible factor in the negotiation presented in the case study. The guidelines are clear, and both the parties should ensure that all their grievances are laid within the provisions in the contract (Scheil-Adlung & Sandner, 2010). Grounded on the insight on the relationship between the employers and the employees, and matters of leave, it is justifiable to believe that the tangible factors in this case study are more important to consider than the intangible ones. If all the tangible issues are addressed, there would be an agreement between Mr. Higashi and his juniors, which would end the conflict shown in the case.
Conrad, D. (2014). Workplace communication problems: inquiries by employees and applicable solutions. Journal of Business Studies Quarterly, 5(4), 105-117.
DeRigne, L. A., Stoddard-Dare, P., & Quinn, L. (2016). Workers without paid sick leave less likely to take time off for illness or injury compared to those with paid sick leave. Health Affairs, 35(3), 520-527. doi: doi.org/10.1377/hlthaff.2015.0965
Hill, H. D. (2013). Paid Sick Leave and Job Stability. Work and Occupations, 40(2), 143–173. doi: doi.org/10.1177/0730888413480893
Martin, G. (2014). The effects of cultural diversity in the workplace. Journal of Diversity Management (JDM), 9(2), 89-92. Retrieved from http://www.cluteinstitute.com/ojs/index.php/JDM/article/view/8974
Scheil-Adlung, X., & Sandner, L. (2010). Evidence on paid sick leave: Observations in times of crisis. Intereconomics, 45(5), 313-323. doi: doi.org/10.1007/s10272-010-0351-6
Schliwen, A., Earle, A., Hayes, J., & Heymann, S.J. (2011). The administration and financing of paid sick leave. International Labour Review, 150(1-2), 43-62. doi: doi.org/10.1111/j.1564-913X.2011.00104.x