Case study of a harassment complaint.

Essay by Eamon_00College, UndergraduateA-, August 2003

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Harassment Complaint.

The main participants in this situation are Luke, who has been an HR advisor for 5 years and Marie, a cleaner for 1 year. Both work for ACME Ltd. Marie has received a number of inappropriate comments from colleagues and this morning was embarrassed in front of a senior executive of ACME. She is very upset but has decided that she needs to "sort it out once and for all". Luke has not been previously aware that there have been any difficulties for Marie, but has knowledge of previous trouble in that team prior to Marie starting.

They have met in Luke's office two hours after the incident. He has spoken to the senior executive, Mr Deans, and to Marie's supervisor, Doug.

Luke and Marie will be attempting to find common ground with the other. Luke needs to understand Marie before he can interpret the message correctly.

As communication is a two-way process they will both be senders and receivers, depending if they are speaking or listening. They will operate on two different channels, horizontal and vertical. I expect that Luke will be seen by Marie as being superior within the organisation and so she will perceive it has being a vertical channel, Luke will have to work at making his messages and feedback as appropriate as possible to Marie in order to encourage her and to not undermine his attempts at support. However when Luke meets with Doug they are more likely to see each other as equals and will therefore use a horizontal channel of communication, this will make it much easier for both men to see each others point of view: there will share common ground.

Feedback is essential in any communication situation, Luke needs to show Marie that he understands her...