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When Things Happen At Work cover

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  • 488 pages
  • 7.0 x 10.0 inches

Human Resources, Conflict, Negotiation, Settlement, Misconduct, Grievance, Arbitration

When Things Happen At Work
A Practitioner’s Guide to People, Circumstances and What to Do Now
by Hugh J. Finlayson

Organizations exist to succeed, however that may be defi ned. And they achieve what they need to achieve through the energy, creativity and commitment of those who come to work with them and what they achieve together.


When Things Happen at Work is about those things. When something happens that requires further inquiry, it may lead to the initiation of a formal investigation. The context, people, circumstances, and results of this investigation are all pieces of a puzzle of sorts, and only when you have assembled all the pieces and organized them in the right order do you see the complete picture. It’s not until that happens that you can make a reasoned, informed decision.

A practical balance between theory and practice, When Things Happen at Work is a comprehensive resource on key employment matters. A mix of personal experience, pragmatism, and theory make this an invaluable primer for managers, human resource practitioners, and those investigating matters at work.

Beginning with a focus on employment preliminaries, including the nature of work and how organizations really function, a solid foundation is set for the next sections. To complete this resource employment theories and practices relevant to HR practitioners, managers, and leaders are examined — including those central to addressing workplace conflict (nature, origin, and approaches), the investigation and management of workplace incidents (processes, practices, and frameworks), disputes and the collective agreement for unionized workplaces, and workplace interactions with purpose (skills, techniques, and considerations). When Things Happen at Work concludes with a challenge: let’s figure out how to make wise choices.

Hugh J. Finlayson is a Chartered Professional in Human Resources (CPHR) and a faculty member in the School of Business, Human Resources Management Program at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT). He is also an Affiliated Scholar with the Centre for Educational Leadership and Policy (CSELP), Faculty of Education, Simon Fraser University.

His current research and teaching builds upon his 35-year career in human resource leadership and management across multiple roles in the public and private sectors, from practitioner, manager, part-time faculty member, and director to chief executive officer. Hugh held senior leadership positions in the K-12 public education sector at the school district level and ultimately at the provincial level as the chief executive officer of the human resource services agency and accredited bargaining agent for British Columbia’s K-12 public education employers. While there he led two other multi-employer associations, one in the post secondary education sector and the other in the community social services sector, through governance and organizational changes as interim chief executive.

An active contributor to advancing the human resource profession, Hugh was president of the Chartered Professionals in Human Resources of British Columbia & Yukon and served as chair of the BCIT Human Resources Management Program Advisory Committee.

Hugh is an Honorary Life Member of the CPHR BC & Yukon in recognition of his contribution to the field of human resources and designated a Fellow CPHR, a title that recognizes the most exceptional CPHR holders in BC and the Yukon.


Hugh J. Finlayson

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