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What Fairness Really Means May 24, 2009

Posted by Tim Rodgers in Management & leadership.
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I wish I could remember where I heard this, and I would give credit if I could remember: “Fairness is not treating everyone the same. Fairness is treating everyone differently.”

As a new manager, it’s tempting to think that one size fits all and all you have to do is be consistent. The reality is that everyone is unique and what works with one person will not work with another, or even the same person the next day. Being a manager means using a wide variety of communication styles, persuasion skills, rewards, and corrective actions, using the context and experience to figure out which is most effective. When I start with a new team I make it a point to schedule at least 30 minutes with each person in the organization to help me begin to understand their differences and how to be fair to them.

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