Manual for Azerbaijan companies Rena Safaralieva

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However, it is difficult to deny that performance evaluations are substantially influenced by  subjective 

judgements.. Today, most Western companies prefer to issue a verification of employment on an official 

letterhead, but recommendations are more and more often written on an ordinary sheet of paper to 

underline the fact that the letter reflects the personal opinion of the referee, rather than the company’s 

official position.  


Disciplinary punishment 


When it comes to disciplinary punishment, the majority of managers hesitate and prefer to take a wait-

and-see position. Many managers close their eyes to weaknesses of their subordinates and hope that 

things will improve of their own accord. At the same time, the imposition of punishment in case of 

obvious violations of labour discipline is very important for a number of reasons. In some cases, such 

measures help to increase labour productivity, as well as to define precise standards of behaviour 

obligatory for all employees.  


Psychological tests have been designed and research has been conducted to discover more efficient 

methods to introduce discipline in work teams. Imposition of disciplinary punishment is to be conducted 

in a professional and constructive manner. For example, if a manager shouts at a subordinate for arriving 

to work late, this measure is hardly likely to change the behaviour of the culprit.  A more feasible way to 

achieve the desired results is to talk face to face and to discuss reasons and consequences of being late. 

The object of criticism should be the act rather than the individual. It is necessary to listen to explanations 

of the other party. Disciplinary punishment should be tough and consistent. It goes without saying that 

punishment cannot be more severe, than that provided by the  relevant state regulation.. 



Rights of employees 


Managing people should be based on such principles as: mutual respect, justice, honest labour, 

transparency, etc. These are the main moral values of any society. Respect for human rights implies 

following these basic moral values. Every individual, regardless of the position held, is entitled to the 

right to life, freedom of opinion, health, security and the right to property. People also have a right to a 

private life. In the business context, this means that every employee is free to spend his or her off-the-

work hours as he or she pleases. If an individual has been hired by a company, this does not mean that his 

or her private life, rights,  or personal secrets automatically become company property. Such integral 

rights shall not be forfeited within the work environment. Employers are not entitled to collect personal 

information about their employees, or to inspect their personal filing cabinets and desks without duly 

justified grounds and authorisation.  The right of privacy in the workplace shall be mentioned specifically. 

Employees, for their part, are entitled to inquire how their performance is evaluated and to learn the 

nature of personal information in their personnel files.  


Unfortunately, we have to state that many employers in Azerbaijan completely ignore the right of their 

employees to a personal life. Employees are forced to accept the work schedules compiled by their 

employers. Some employees find themselves in work conditions based on the principle: “we do not have 

fixed work hours, you will work as much as needed.” Most enterprises in Azerbaijan do not pay overtime, 

despite the fact that the law prohibits overtime without due compensation.  


Right for grievance 


Based upon the above discussion, it should be clear that every employee has a right of grievance, which 

means a right to file a complaint to his or her supervisor and, if necessary, to the head of a company on 

legal infringements and ethical violations. A claimant should be protected against possible retaliation of 

the accused and each manager should, in his turn, create conditions for safe grievance filing. Procedures 

to file a grievance should be defined precisely and made known to all staff members in order to eliminate 

all potential misunderstanding. For example, an employee is entitled to make a compliant to his or her 

immediate supervisor. If not satisfied, an employee can proceed to the next line manager with a copy to 

immediate supervisor. Such procedures are designed to ensure subordination in a company, but at the 

same time freeing the employee from the potentially subjective judgement of his or her immediate 




Safety regulations, labour protection and health preservation 


Many companies have special programs on safety regulations, labour protection and health preservation. 

The main aim of these programs is to prevent accidents in the work place. Every firm is obliged to ensure 

safe labour conditions for its personnel. Staff members, in their turn, are to follow safety regulations. To 

create a healthy and safe workplace environment, company strategy in this area usually sets forth the  

below points: 


ensuring that equipment and tools are safe  


following safety precautions, monitoring their implementation and explaining these rules to 



organising special training programs on health care, labour hygiene and health protection for 



creating incentives for healthy life style of employees  both  in and out of the work place


consistently upgrading safety systems to minimise accidents and traumas.  




Any information of a technical or financial nature or of any other sort considered to constitute a 

commercial secret, (for example, information for internal use only) shall be classified as confidential. 

Personal information, records of a company’s customers and personnel, as well as information on a 

country’s security which might be available to a company’s officials, should also be considered 



In any competitive company that produces quality goods or services, management imposes strict rules to 

preserve confidentiality of their know-how to prevent leakage of information. Disclosure of such 

information is inadmissible from ethical point of view, as well as for commercial considerations, 

especially if information in question concerns the market product or service of a company. In short, any 

information that might be used by competitors to the ruin a company should be classified as confidential. 

In addition, employers shall not use confidential information for their own personal gain, nor should they 

pass this information to third parties. If an employee leaves a company, all confidential information shall 

be returned to the company.  


Many companies have their own rules concerning confidential information: 



confidential information shall not be kept in places where it can be accessed by outsiders, for 

example, in a conference hall, reception or on the desk;



outsiders shall not be allowed to move freely about the office;



information on a company or its affiliates shall not be passed on to close friends or relatives


confidential information shall not be discussed in public places, such as elevators, corridors, 

reception areas and off of the company premises, (underground, bus stations, etc.);



any requests for information, for example, from media or financial analysts, shall be forwarded to 

public relations department of a company.  


These procedures may seem at  first glance too severe and bureaucratic, but they are efficient enough and 

enable companies to survive in a tough competitive environment and ensure the long term stability of a 

company in a market. Today in Azerbaijan we do not have many huge companies, and therefore lack 

serious competition in the market. Therefore, this problem is not acute for our country. However, some 

enterprises, for example, SOCAR (State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic), which concludes multi-

million contracts, should in our view, take this problem quite seriously. 



Conflict of interests 


All employees regardless of their professional and personal relationships, must come into contact with 

others. The ability of an individual to find a common language with other people—whether  colleagues, 

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