6 Tips on Preventing Sexual Harassment
In today’s society, taking the necessary steps toward sexual harassment prevention in the workplace is not only a crucial decision in the legal sense, it just makes good business sense. If your company is teaming with this type of offensive behavior, then you are setting yourself up for a multitude of lawsuits, not to mention lower job productivity and negative team spirit among your employees. Sexual harassment can take on many forms, but the overall ramifications of it are the same in that it creates an unfavorable and discouraging working atmosphere.
6 Tips for Sexual Harassment Prevention
By far the most efficient weapon against sexual harassment is prevention. There are numerous ways to reduce the risk of sexual harassment in your workplace, and one of the most important steps is to gather together business managers, human resources managers, and other important representatives to create a clear and precise policy for your employee handbook. Devote a considerable amount of space to get your point across so that there is no room for speculation. Some of the finer points to include in your policy are:
- Describe in detail what sexual harassment means. Give examples, if necessary, of certain situations and places where the offending action may occur, such as work conferences, in the office, etc.
- Make it known that sexual harassment is against the law.
- Boldly state that your workplace has a strict zero tolerance stance.
- Define the process for filing a complaint and where employees may seek the proper help.
- Make it known that all complaints will be investigated.
- Describe the disciplinary action that will be taken against those found guilty.
After the establishment of the policy, hold a meeting and present it to your employees and staff members. Start by handing out a copy of the new sexual harassment policy to each individual in the company. Then, in order to ensure the an understanding of the policy, require everyone sign and return it to you. Make copies of the policy and display it on bulletin boards, in the company break room, and other areas of high visibility. Make it a definitive part of new employee inductions and hold annual meetings to reiterate the policy and its significance.
Some other helpful strategies:
Train your supervisors so they will understand the responsibilities that go along with preventing and managing complaints. Supervisors should possess the ability to identify potential problems immediately. In addition, they must also understand how to intervene if the situation should present itself. They should also learn the proper way to handle a complaint after it becomes reported.
- Many well-known companies specialize in training business officials and employees against sexual harassment. These include law firms and risk management consultants.
- By taking the proper steps, you can play an active role in reducing legal action within your company. Most importantly, however, you will be creating a workplace that is inviting, reputable, and friendly for your all employees.