The modern workplace is a "dynamic environment" where the success of a business has a strong dependence on good employee relations.
Rita Donaghy, the newest member of the BBC News Website's small business panel of experts, believes that resolving workplace disputes quickly and without animosity can be a very beneficial - not to mention cost effective вЂ“ way to improve productivity.
She cites team-work, diversity, strong co-worker relationships and most importantly trust as key elements to induce a successful working environment.
"Employers should keep their employees informed and genuinely listen to their views. By acknowledging the value of people's work you are more likely to have a motivated workforce that can be vital for building confidence and encouraging initiative."
"Developing relationships is also about treating employees fairly - by developing equality and diversity policies - promoting flexible working, wherever possible, and encouraging staff to develop new skills."
She added: "If you have the right policies and procedures in place, then you are well on your way to dealing with any people issues that arise. If not dealt with properly, issues such as absenteeism, bullying and discipline can be costly."