I'm a manager, not really an owner, but have a vested interest in seeing that the business I'm in go a positive direction. Recently I have been experiencing a troubling occurence. I am the target of the rumor mill.
Yesterday I got back from vacation. I did some month end stuff and found that the graphs from the two sides of our clinic were troubling. The productivity and patient count is down this last month. I had another person in here, a student, who will be learning about how to run a business. I wanted to give her a lesson on how math is used in everyday business. She interpreted the graphs much differently than I would have, and then told everyone that I said that a certain portion of the clinic was bringing all of our numbers down.
Yeah, so I guess only time will tell on this one. It's not about Atheism but the rumor mill really.
Any suggestions about how to handle this situation?
Since she is the student and you are the teacher, I would ask her to demonstrate how she came to her conclusion about the graph and then explain your different outcome. If you have come to a conclussion about why the numbers are down, I would hold a staff meeting and deliver positive ideas on how to maybe increase business and productivity as well as find reasons to compliment everyones efforts thus far. This would show that no one is being blamed for the downturn and assure people they are appreciated. I would also offer, as a way to better lines of communication, that anyone with concerns or fears to air them there at the meeting or later in private.
Finally I would spit in the students drink when they weren't looking. Or not ; )
I own a hair salon and I love my job. I have a great time with 98% of my clients and all of the other stylists. We talk politics, sex and religion and sometimes the entire shop gets involved in the discussions. Jews, Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Athiests and Agnostics I have great conversations with them all. I am also a skeptic so alt. med is another great topic I frequently get to banter about with the other stylists and my clients. The old addage of these topics being taboo might apply in most businesses, but not in mine.
I used to own an automotive paint & body shop before the economy went south.
Every once in awhile I'd have a customer come in and try to 'sell' me on Jesus and all that.
I'd flat out tell them this is not a church, I don't want to hear about your 'religion' and that the bible is a 2,000 yr old Tabloid that is not unlike a rumor... when it finally gets back to you it's not even close to it's original form.
Actually I had a nice increase in business afterwards, as the area where my shop was in a heavily bible-thumped area.
As an employee, there are things that I can see from my angle the bosses can't and there are things that the boss sees that I don't; communicating usually brings the two perspectives together.
The other question is why did the student see something else and why did she (or he) not feel that they could share it with you? It may be ladder climbing, ignorance, arrogance or something else, but it is always worth looking into the root cause.
Either the business is too insulated from reality or the student is assuming to know more than he does and is running his mouth.
Either way, you know who you are and what the business is so it really is more a matter of determining the reason for the behavior to decide the action, isn't it?