How to handle fighting co-workers
November 16, 2012 12:33 PM Subscribe
I am the owner of a very small business which I purchased (with 2 silent partners) 3 years ago. On most days there is only me and two other employees.
The problem I'm having is my two employees have gotten into some type of conflict where they are now not speaking to one another.
posted by drug_dealer73 to work & money (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
One lady is in her 60’s and has been working at this store for over 20 years. She is sometimes difficult especially when we make any changes to the status quo but she is great with the customers and she has known some of the clients for many years. The other is a new lady we hired about 2 years ago who is also great with customers especially with the large number of polish clients as she can speak polish. This new lady is at times very sensitive and takes any affront (perceived or otherwise) to heart. Both are good employees with their strengths and weaknesses and firing is not an option I want to consider.
I'm not sure what the nature of the conflict is. About a month ago, New employee had asked me why Old employee wasn't talking to her ago and I said I didn't know. Later, when I asked Old employee what’s going on, she dodged the question by saying that everyone gets more work done when they don’t talk. Since then, I've left it at that.
In our small store, the workflow is such that there isn't that much communication between them needed but there is certainly tension in the store.
I am new to managing people, especially ones that I feel are replaying the Housewives of New Jersey at work. My natural reaction has been to ignore this drama until they grow up and work it out or someone quits. The extra trouble of going as the in-between-er a few times a day seems less bother than facing this situation head on. But part of me is saying ignoring the problem is never a good idea (I am however, very good at that). Please advise me if my approach is stupid and if so, how should I attempt to fix this problem?