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Chapter 6. Identifying the Garden-Variet... > Preventative Tools - Pg. 62

Identifying the Garden-Variety Difficult Employee 62 Creating Norms The term norms is a sociology term that refers to the guidelines and rules of conduct that people follow in a group. Sometimes these are formally mapped out. Often they are not so formally mapped out but are somehow understood by people. A simple way of putting it is that norms tell people "the way we do things around here." In terms of prevention of difficult behavior, norms can be very important. When the norms of a workplace are well understood and supported by most employees, there tends to be less difficult behavior. When the norms are not well understood or not well supported, people behave the way they like, and that's not always a good thing. Employee Handbook Norms are rules of conduct used by group members to guide their behavior. They can be explicit (formally written) or informal. People learn these rules by talking to each other and seeing what behaviors result in rewards or punishments.