Grief is a universal human experience, yet workplace culture is often inhospitable to people suffering profound loss. Managers come to work prepared to celebrate births and birthdays, and even to handle illnesses, but when it comes to death, they fall silent and avert their gaze. The default approach is to try to spare the office from grief, leaving bereaved employees alone for a few days and then hoping they’ll return expediently to work.This article provides guidance on how to humanely help team members return to productivity. Grief rarely unfolds in a neat progression, and managers should understand the phases the bereaved will experience and the most helpful response to each. Immediately after a death, acknowledging the loss without making demands is the best a manager can do. After grieving employees are back on the job, managers should be patient with inconsistency in performance and attitude. And as workers eventually emerge from mourning, managers should support this opportunity for growth.In confronting grief, managers help fulfill their promise to bring out the best in their employees.