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Going back to basics with whistleblowers

Jaclyn Jaeger | December 11, 2017

I am the proud aunt of five nieces and nephews, all under the age of ten, and through that role I’ve honed one important skill: conflict resolution.

Put any group of children in the same room together and conflict is bound to arise. Typically, one “trouble maker” breaks the rules and ruins it for everybody else, while the so-named “tattletale” wants the problem resolved quickly and fairly.

Such situations, I’ve learned, can be quickly diffused in three important steps: hearing all sides of the story; appropriately disciplining the “trouble maker”; and assuring the “tattletale” that the situation has been listened to, considered, and resolved in a manner that’s fair for all parties involved. Failure to handle the situation properly, on the other hand, results in all hell breaking loose.

Conflict resolution concerning how to appropriately respond to an employee who voices a concern about wrongdoing in a work environment operates in the same rudimentary way. At...

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