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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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I act as a mentor to a recently appointed Regional Executive

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I act as a mentor to a recently appointed Regional Executive in a Residential Management business - she has a team of property managers working in regions of the UK - property managers work from home and have a portfolio of properties which they manage - as a result the MD travels to meet property managers on their own patch - having been in the role for 15 weeks she has met with each property at least twice in one to ones - one of the PM having met with the MD just twice (for about 1 hour on each occasion) has raised a grievance accusing the MD of harassment - The MD is recognised by other managers as a direct but caring manager manager and her MBTI profile confirms as much! The Property Manager in question is around 30 has 3 children and her role in the business does involve quite a lot of travel between properties. She appears to object to any supervision and may feel a little intimidated by the MD who is very experienced in the property management business (that's an assumption) - my instinct suggests that the Property Manager may be looking for an escape route.
My apologies for the lengthy introduction - my question is what in the context of the problem might constitute 'harassment' - does it need to be shown that the bullying or harassment is persitent and over a period of time? Could one meeting constitute a basis for a serious grievance which the Property Manager has escalated to board level without taking time to resolve or explain the matter to her direct manager?
Submitted by Dr David Worth
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alex J. replied 1 year ago.
Hi,
Thank you for your question and welcome.
My name is ***** ***** I will assist you.
Are the property managers employees?
Does the company have an employment handbook and grevience procedure?
Kind regards
AJ
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

property managers are employees

Yes but at This stage I don't have access to it - my understanding is that all the handbook indicates is the process of grievance procedures and does not appear to comment on what is and what is not a grievance

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I have replied I am waiting the answer which is now a couple of days late

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I have answered your question almost 2 days ago - yes the Property Managers are employed and No I don't personal access to the compampany hand book - however although it describes the process for dealing with grievances it does not define what a grievance comprises hence the question - is it possible to get a reasonably quick answer please - David Worth

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Please reassign the expert as I need an answer fairly quickly and have paid £56 for the service

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, apologies for not receiving an answer earlier, I am not sure why the original expert has not responded. I see you have now opened your question up to other experts so I will try and help instead. Hope this answer finds you in good time.
As far as ‘harassment’ is concerned, the relevant legislation is The Protection from Harassment Act 1997 in civil cases and The Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 in criminal cases. The law states that a person must not pursue a course of conduct which amounts to harassment of another and which he or she knows or ought to know amounts to harassment. Although there is no definition of what specifically amounts to harassment, it would usually include alarming a person or causing them distress and must have occurred on at least two occasions.
Therefore, if the conduct complained of has only occurred once, that would not meet the legal criteria for harassment as it must have occurred on at last two occasions.
It could still come under bullying although again a single occurrence is unlikely to have much strength to take this very far. The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) defines bullying as “offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour, an abuse or misuse of power through means that undermine, humiliate, denigrate or injure the recipient.” Whatever form it takes, it is unwarranted and unwelcome to the individual subjected to it. There is no requirement for the conduct to have occurred more than once but as you can imagine a single or isolated incident is not going to provide much evidence to really back up a complaint of bullying and you would usually expect a continuous course of conduct over time before a complaint would be taken more seriously.
Saying that, there is nothing stopping someone from raising a complaint or grievance even after once incident. People perceive such situations differently and someone may become aggrieved even after one occurrence. The employer should still investigate the complaint and decide on what, if any, appropriate action is needed – it could be just having a word with the person against whom the complaint was made to advise them to be more sensitive or careful in the future but I would not expect any formal disciplinary action against them after just one incident.
I hope this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating, or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 46183
Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.

That's a brilliant, full and helpful answer -thank you Ben I am completely satisfied

Thanks - David Worth

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