I had many alleluia moments as I worked my way through this book; it is thoughtful, practical, and translatable into environments where workplace conflict is present and prevalent. The Drama-Free Workplace offers the reader insight into why conflict exists and guides us on how to address toxic environments differently to encourage a more appropriate approach.
The book is practical, focusing on what can be done in organisational environments to improve the current state of things, notably it spotlights on our obsession with the use of archaic policy design to try and address conflict situations and reflects on real examples of toxic behaviours that we all will have seen in our working world at some stage.
Perez has a background in employment litigation but still cries out for a humanistic approach to resolving workplace conflict rather than reverting to strict policy wording. She consistently makes the point that the use of legal language in our dealings with conflict can escalate matters into a combative process, thus ensuring ongoing drama when a more emotionally
intelligent response would have avoided it.
This book is written in an American context and briefly touches on American legislation but it is not enough to render the book irrelevant if you are in another country, nor is it too distracting from the main point of the narrative.
The close of the book becomes a little clunky to read but due primarily to the numerous practical examples and references to how to change policy or process wording to serve organisations better.
I enjoyed that it wasn’t an indulgent statement about how workplaces need to be different in our modern times without substantiating how it can be made to work in the here and now.
For any HR professional working at the sharp end of employee relations issues, or businesses that are reflecting on their approach to governance, it is a must read.
C-J Green, Founder – Tovip Ltd