Download This Article As A Word Document
Supervisors: The Most Important Drug-free Workplace Ingredient!
Managers and Supervisors: From the CEO to the first-line supervisor, all are
responsible for supervising one or more employees. They delegate work, monitor
the work/progress and are generally responsible for ensuring the mission of the
organization is accomplished. Front-line supervisors are, however, especially
important in that they are the ones closest to the employees directly
responsible for producing the organization's goods and services. Depending on
the organization, their responsibilities can include hiring and training,
encouraging and disciplining, effectively communicating policies and directives,
handling grievances, and enforcing safety issues. Nowhere else, at any level,
is more expected or performance more critical.
Now, more than ever, the role of the supervisor is important in ensuring the efficiency,
productivity and "satisfaction" of each employee. In days past, the foreman/supervisor
was an "expert" in his area and responsible for overseeing the production of a team
focused on a narrow range of tasks. New technology and the introduction of computers
has increased productivity and removed many of these labor intensive, repetitive tasks.
Now, supervisors manage "people" who may perform many diverse tasks.
What has changed is the pace of change! While a supervisor's job may have once
been a relatively simple oversight process because little of the work changed
from day-to-day, the supervisor must now include the ability to manage changing
tasks and procedures in a more diverse area of responsibility. Perhaps this one
single requirement, often driven by technology, separates today's supervisors
from those of a decade ago. All of this has occurred in an ever-more competitive
environment where organizations are no longer just concerned with competitors in
the U.S., but must also be concerned with those from dozens of foreign countries
where labor is "cheap" and plentiful.
For all of these reasons, and many more, the pressure on organizations and
supervisors to provide the best, most cost-effective product/service possible
has never been greater. An employer cannot afford to have employees who are
"under-the-influence of drugs or alcohol. Productivity, safety and efficiency
demand alert, substance free employees. One way to accomplish this task is to
do everything possible to provide efficiencies and savings by ensuring a
A drug-free workplace hinges on informed, committed managers and supervisors.
The only way for a supervisor to be informed and able to recognize an employee
who is "under-the-influence" of drugs or alcohol is through training.
The supervisor must be able to recognize the signs, symptoms and performance
indicators of impaired employees.
Gary L. Glisan
Superior Training Solutions, Inc.