As a boss, making sure that your staff have a safe working environment is one of your most important jobs. That means making sure that you’re up to date with all of the health and safety concerns but that’s only one part of it. It’s also important that you protect your staff from harassment and bullying in the workplace. Obviously, hiring the right people is important but you can never tell when problems like this might come up. Workplace harassment also comes in many forms, some of them not that obvious unless you know what you’re looking for. With that in mind, here’s everything you need to know about harassment in the workplace.
This is the most common and the most easily recognisable forms of workplace harassment. It usually comes in the form of physical violence but it also refers to property damage as well. Verbal abuse and threatening behaviour also class as physical harassment and in most cases, it constitutes assault so it’s a very serious criminal issue as well. Anything like pushing, punching or slapping is physical harassment and should never be tolerated in the workplace under any circumstances. If you suspect that it might be happening, the best way to deal with it is to pull the employee aside and ask them if everything is ok.
In light of recent events in the media, the scale of sexual harassment in the workplace is just becoming clear. The problem with sexual harassment at work is that people often don’t understand what it entails. Most people realize that unwanted touching is sexual harassment but it doesn’t end there. Any suggestive comments toward other employees is sexual harassment too. It can be hard to enforce in the workplace so you should put a ban on any conversations of a sexual nature, even if the people involved think that they’re just joking. Either way, it’s not appropriate in the workplace.
Cyber bullying is a new form of harassment that is harder to detect because there are no physical signs that you can spot. It might be that employees are sending abusive messages to one another but they may also be posting hateful comments about people on sites like thedirty.com without their knowledge. This is a site where people who have a grudge against somebody will put up pictures and horrible, usually false things about them. It can really damage a person’s reputation so if you do find that you or one of your employees appears on this site, you need to find companies that offer thedirty.com removal . Protecting against cyber bullying is difficult because you can’t see what’s going on in people's private messages. The best way is to put a ban on phones and social media in the office and let your employees know that they should report it if they receive online abuse.
Discriminatory harassment describes any harassment against a person because of their age, race or gender. In its most obvious form, that means employees making racist, sexist or ageist jokes against another employee. But if people are treating another person differently by talking down to them or maybe a superior is treating somebody in a minority group unfairly, that’s discriminatory harassment as well. It’s important that you have a very clear policy to deal with discrimination and you take it seriously
Workplace discrimination is incredibly tricky and sometimes, the signs aren’t obvious. As a boss, it’s up to you to be vigilant and check in with your employees if you think that something might be wrong.