Title Conflict management in SMEs
Project Number 2010-1-NO1-LEO05-01845
Project Type Transfer of Innovation
Marketing Text Good conflict management at workplaces stimulates productivity and overall workplace health and well-being.This project develop easily managed tools and methods for conflict prevention for small employers and workplaces. The methods are based on state of the art research and are tested in real life settings.
Summary Bullying at workplaces represents a big problem for many employees. Research studies document serious negative consequences from bullying, for the victims, as well as their colleagues and the enterprise they are employed by. Research indicates that as much as five per cent of employees perceived themselves as being bullied at the workplace (Eurofound). Bullying and badly managed conflicts lowers the productivity in workplaces, impairs the quality of the psychological work environment and represents a problem seen from a CSR or ethical perspective. Today, Norway is internationally in the forefront of research, legislation against bullying and development and implementation of anti-bullying policies at the workplace level. There are lessons to be learned and good practices to be disseminated from a nationwide Norwegian research based model called “The Bully Free Workplace” (BFW). The model is considered best practice and recommended by the Norwegian Labor inspectorate, the social partners and the research community. It is implemented at several Norwegian enterprises. So far the model has however not been adapted to the needs of SMEs. Considering that nine out of ten enterprises in EU employ have less than ten persons, it becomes evident that small enterprises are the backbone of European business economy and that there is a need also to adapt the program to the needs of small workplaces. Furthermore, research indicates that especially in some countries in South and East Europe anti-bullying programs at work place level are not commonplace. Therefore, a transfer and adaptation of the Norwegian BFW model might trigger off and boost development of such systems in these countries. By transferring the model to countries with less developed anti-bullying systems and to SMEs, one also gets valuable experience with the performance of the model under more critical circumstances. This will in turn contribute to improve the model and make it more robust and sustainable across various settings and sectors. In addition to Norway and the UK from the north/west, the consortium consists of partners from east and south of Europe (Lithuania, Hungary, France and Spain). All partners are training institutions well connected with SME organisastions the social partners and relevant public bodies. The dissemination capacity of the partners is high. The BFW model will be further developed to match the regulative and institutional framework in the partner countries and the training and development needs of small workplaces. Expected impact is a wider dissemination and implementation of anti-bullying programs in the business communities, lower level of bullying and badly managed conflicts, better work place health and higher productivity in small enterprises.
Description The project will adapt tools and methods for conflict prevention and management for larger enterprises so they are easy to handle for small employers. The methods was developed in Norway during a two-year project. They are now further developed, adapted and transferred to countries in South and East Europe as well as to small employers in France and UK.
Professional, Scientific and Technical Activities
Human Health and Social Work Activities
material for open learning
program or curricula
Product information Tools and methods for conflict prevention and management for small employers in English, Lithuanian, Spanish, French, Hungarian and Norwegian.