How to Document Negative Behavior in the Workplace
Documented negative behavior can become extremely important if conflict resolution cannot be achieved within normal internal channels. Documenting the steps that have been taken to resolve a conflict demonstrates to others that you've done everything possible to resolve the situation and you've followed all stated processes. Always include the following in your documentation.
- Times and dates of every interaction in which negative behavior is demonstrated. Interactions may be:
- Phone calls.
- Formal meetings.
- Casual meetings in the hallway.
- Emails and other written communications.
- A summary of the inappropriate behavior that took place during those interactions.
- Witnesses who have seen the person's inappropriate behavior.
- An itemization of things done to resolve the situation, including:
- Boundaries and consequences that have been communicated and enforced.
- Every attempt to resolve the situation.
- The process followed to find resolution.
Documentation is very time consuming, but it can be the best defense when outside assistance is solicited.