Don't discuss reviews & dicipline.

The GM wants me to draw up a confidentiality agreement for employees to sign. This has nothing to do with trade secrets. He wants employees to sign a document stating that they will not discuss things like employee discipline and employee evaluations with each other.

I know that employers cannot prohibit employees from discussing pay, but can we prohibit discussions regarding employee discipline and evaluations? We are non union.


  • 8 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • The NLRB defines protected activity very broadly. Employees who start out talking about performance evaluations can easily drift into a conversation about how their evaluation scores impact their pay increases, etc. A conversation about a disciplinary measure administered to one employee can quickly become a conversation about whether all employees who violated that rule have been disciplined similarly in the past.

    Aside from the potential for violating the NLRA, implementing this kind of policy opens the door to all kinds of speculation among employees about who is being treated better, or worse, than anyone else in the organization and why there is so much secrecy.

    Requiring ees to sign a blanket "no tell" agreement really won't fly with the average workforce. What will the GM do when an employee refuses to sign it? What's the penalty? How is the GM going to keep ees from discussing the "no tell" agreement itself? What is the GM going to do when introducing the "no tell" agreement prompts one or more employees to contact a union because now he/she views the company as being unfair?

    And last but not least, what kind of message will the GM be sending to honest, hard working ees who don't talk to each other about these issues in the first place? Will they be offended that management doesn't trust them? Will they begin to distrust management?

    Implementing a "no tell" agreement/policy just may open up Pandora's Box.

  • Tell your GM the HR Hero community agrees it's a bad, bad idea. And you should get a raise for helping him avoid making such a mistake.
  • I wonder what the GM has to hide?
  • I understand the mentality of a person who wants to control what employees say and put a lid on negative talk but this is the wrong way to go about it. The restriction (in my opinion) is too broad and comes too close to NLRB, weingarten, and whistleblower protections.

    Not to mention, in my experience, the BEST way to guarantee employees will discuss something is to tell them NOT to discuss something.
  • GM is probably over-reacting to some spat between employees. This is NOT the way.
  • I agree with the other Posters. Based on this alone, if I were an employee I would question management's integrity...that there would be partiality and an unwillingness to be accountable for their actions.
  • Although "lets not talk about it" is my in-laws family motto.
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