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Helen Ramsay: A Mediation Attempt

Published 01 Jan 2004
Reference 5116
Region Global
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Prizes & Awards

2010 ecch Best Selling Case in Human Resource Management / Organisational Behaviour

2009 ecch Best Selling Case in Human Ressource Management / Organisational Behaviour

2008 ecch Best-selling Case in Human Resource Management / Organisational Behaviour

2007 ecch Best-selling Case in Human Resource Management / Organisational Behaviour

Winner of 2004 EFMD Case Competition, Corporate Category

Summary

Two reasonable people, a boss and a subordinate, find each other 'impossible to handle'. Through their descriptions of each other's behavior we realize that they are in a self-perpetuating dynamic. An attempted intervention by the HR manager not only fails to resolve the situation; it actually makes it worse.

Teaching objectives

To illustrate how cognitive biases can trigger very different takes on the same 'reality' To discuss the management of 'lower performers' To increase awareness of the vicious circles in which bosses and 'lower performers' get caught To discuss the role of HR in intervention and prevention

Keywords
  • Human resources manager
  • Boss behaviour
  • Subordinate performance
  • Management and leadership
  • Motivation and expectations
  • Self-fulfilling prophecy
  • Pygmalion effect
  • Communication
  • Conflict and mediation
  • Cognitive biases
  • Labelling
  • Selective attention
  • Attributions
  • HR (human resources) systems
  • fair process and feedback
  • Vicious circles. AR2003
  • AR0203
  • RD0303