NY Times article “Friends at Work? Not So Much”
The New York Times recently published an op-ed claiming that the amount of people who seek or maintain friendships in the workplace has dropped in recent decades. Where people once looked to the workplace as a main source of long-term friendships, by 2004 only 30% of Americans said they had a close friend at work. The article cites several studies that show we communicate better and are more productive when we work with friends.
In workers’ compensation, we represent employees who have been injured on the job. More often than not when an injured worker calls our office they are upset by how they have been treated by their employer once they were injured, especially if they have worked there for a long time. If an employee develops a close relationship with their coworkers and their boss, when they get hurt on the job, they suddenly feel like those relationships were one-sided because they feel they are tossed aside as soon as they get hurt (oftentimes for no fault of their own).
Injuries at work can change workplace relationships. The employer often must hire a replacement, which requires additional expenses, and co-workers might feel they are caught in the middle. We often ask workers who call our office whether they are on good terms with their employer because when they are, things tend to go a lot easier. If you have friends at work and get injured, will that make the process better or worse? Would you feel that your employer and co-workers will go to bat for you or will you feel more hurt because people might distance themselves from you? I like to think the former. Either way it’s a safe bet for all parties to be open and honest with each other and most of all, be kind to each other- no one wants to get hurt.
Today’s post comes from guest author Thomas Domer, from The Domer Law Firm.
A new study from the Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI) indicates trust or mistrust in the work relationship plays a significant role in the outcome of a workers’ compensation claim. In a recent benchmark study in Iowa by WCRI, almost four out of ten workers interviewed reported they were concerned they would be fired or laid off after they were injured.
The Iowa study reflects similar results in Wisconsin and other benchmark states. All workers who were interviewed received workers’ comp benefits and experienced more than a week of lost work time. Additional findings noted two-thirds of the injured Iowa workers had other health conditions (having smoked for ten years or had diabetes or lung conditions). Obviously those with significant pre-existing conditions had predictably worse results.
Earning your client’s trust is a crucial part of being an attorney.
Today we have a guest post from our colleague Roger Moore of Nebraska.
In its most basic form, trust is defined as “reliance on the integrity, strength, and ability of a person”.
Trust can also be defined as “a person on whom one relies”.
I was reminded of this earlier this week when a client for whom I had settled a case dropped by our office. This client had been a truck driver and lived out of state. While we were working on his case we never had the opportunity to meet in person, yet he came to trust me to look out for his best interests and advise him along the course of his workers’ compensation injury. He came by to thank me for the work I had done for him which had been completed over a year and a half ago.
As I spoke with him I began to understand how stressful it must be to trust someone who lives halfway across the country and with whom you may never meet in person. This is a unique aspect of trucking cases we handle which isn’t found in other types of work-related injuries.
Due to his injury he was unable to return to trucking. However, were been able to negotiate a settlement which allowed him to live his life Continue reading