Employee relations in my opinion are basically the relationships that exist between all employees in the workplace. This includes equal employees, employees that you may be a superior to, as well as your bosses. Employee relations are a very important characteristic in the workplace. If there are not good relationships between employees then it makes it a lot harder for those people to work together, and in turn it will lead to a less productive workplace. I honestly believe that the relationships between employees can make or break a company. I actually have past experiences with such problems For example, I used to be a student assistant in an office here on campus. The relationships between employees in this office were not necessarily the best. My superiors were not necessarily the nicest people in the world to me or each other. My superior employees often disagreed with each other on certain subjects and it in turn made them much less willing to work together. This created an unproductive work place and did not allow work that needed to be done to be completed in a timely manner. This also made it an uncomfortable work environment for a student employee such as myself. When I had questions or wanted to know how something should be done, it left me unsure as to who I should ask because what worked for one employee was often not sufficient to other. Also I have worked in some places where employee relations were good and it allowed for work to be a much more enjoyable place. For instance I have an internship right now and the conditions that I work in as well as the people that I work with are great. All of the people that I now work with not only get a long, but also work together to achieve common goals. Everyone is friendly and everyone know each other. In my experience this has allowed for a much more productive workplace, and it also allows for work to be completed in a timely manner. In my opinion the recent economic downturn has made it much more difficult for employee relations to be good. When revenue is not coming in as much as it used to it makes it a lot harder for people to work together, and a a lot easier to point fingers. When a company is not receiving its normal income an employer may start to look inside the company to see why. Situations such as this one create an uneasy work place that is very stressful to the boss. In this type of situation the boss may be evaluating his company as well as his employees. This can create a nervous atmosphere for regular employees as well as a stressful one for the boss. All of the employees will start fearing for their jobs, and the boss may be stressed because he may have to let employees go. Some of the employees that he or she has to let go could be his or her friends which makes the situation even more difficult. An example of this is portrayed by AIG. The economic downturn had a great effect on the company, and the superiors within the company made promises to the employees that they could not guarantee.