Earlier this week, I briefed a group of executives on Equal Employment Opportunity issues. The questions were excellent and the reaction was quite positive.
There is a greater level of intensity, of course, when discussing the same subject with managers and supervisors because those two groups are closer to the action. They encounter criticism and personnel problems in the raw and without filters. Jack wants to know why Mary got a schedule adjustment and yet the supervisor is restricted from full disclosure because a disability issue was involved. Carlos is upset about an open recruitment that seems to be a waste of time because "everyone knows" Ted is going to get the promotion.
Supervisors often have to walk a tightrope and there are few chances for them to dodge questions. Certainly there are tough decisions that face people at a higher level but when it comes to the more emotionally-charged matters, the people in the trenches have no peers.