Preventing Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: A Guide for Business Leaders
Between 2018 and 2021, 98,411 individuals filed charges of sexual harassment. Unfortunately, many of these cases stem from the workplace. These numbers are unthinkable and make working in a single space difficult at best.
Workplace sexual harassment should not be something that occurs so often. Work should be a safe space for all workers and clients. Taking steps to ensure that such situations do not happen is imperative.
If you're in charge of a business, figuring out how to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace is a measure you must take. If you're looking for a guide on how to make this happen, we have some information for you. Keep reading below for guidance on how to prevent sexual harassment for your workers.
How Is Sexual Harassment Defined
It is important to define what sexual harassment consists of within the office. This can manifest in many different forms. At its core, sexual harassment in the office consists of violating someone's personal space, degrading, hostile, and humiliating behaviors that takes place without a warrant.
Being on top of tackling sexual harassment is important, and it increases a better environment within your workplace. Put your workers first and develop a trajectory of how to handle any reports of harassment in a way that protects your workers in the best way possible.
Have a Policy in Place
If you're in charge of a large group of people the first thing you're going to want to do is to have a written policy in place. Having a document and policy that can be referred to will be essential within your business. Written documentation gives your workers detailed information to refer to if there are questions.
Not only does it give written documentation, but it allows your workers to understand what behavior is appropriate and what behavior is not appropriate.
The policy in place should include written protection for your workers. Clearly state what is acceptable and what is not acceptable. Be sure to also clearly define what counts as sexual harassment and what will not be tolerated by your business.
Have detailed information on what to do if a worker feels as though they are being harassed. All information should be clearly stated so that all of your workers feel comfortable enough with the rules you expect from them.
Discuss With Your Workers
Keep an open dialog regarding the risks and possibilities of harassment in your business. Your workers should feel comfortable enough to speak openly and discuss what would happen if harassment were to occur. Have an open door where those who are employed know that there will be action taken if rules are violated.
Provide sexual harassment training so that your workers understand that you will rightly take action if they feel threatened or at risk. Make sure that there is always open communication of behavior within the office and workspace. This gives your workers the chance to feel comfortable that any situations would be addressed and resolved.
Be Aware of Any Risks
Keep all eyes and ears open around the workspace. Have an HR department that works hand and hand with your workers to identify any situations that may be a risk to your staff. Take all precautions that will keep your workers as safe as possible.
When possible, take care of any risks before they become situations. Have those open discussions when members of your workspace do not feel comfortable within your business. This will help to manage any situations that may arise.
Make It Easy to Report Problems
Your workers do not want to have to jump through hoops to let you know there is a situation at hand. be sure there is a safe and easy way for your workers to let you know a problem is occurring. Develop an easy communication system that is confidential and fair to all parties.
Make sure that your workers are clear on what classifies as a complaint and how those situations will be dealt with. This will improve the morale of your office and allow your workers to understand that you take the situation very seriously.
Have Training and Assessment
The most important part of taking sexual harassment seriously in your place of business is to have precautionary means in place. Training should be a mandatory part of your day-to-day business. All of your workers should take the time to go over what happens if they've been made to fill uncomfortable.
Be sure that your office is a space that has been carefully vetted and monitored. Any inkling of a problem should be looked into and assessed for any serious issues that may come from it.
Take all inquiries and rumors to be serious allegations and look into the situation that may be occurring. This makes all of your workers feel more comfortable in their place of business and puts in place a model for correct behavior within your place of work.
Always offer training and closely look at the situations that may take place.
Learn How to Prevent Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
Keep all of your workers safe while taking care of business in a way that is safe for all team members. Learn how to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace and educate your workers on the best way to conduct business. Allow your workers to feel safe while they get their job done.
For more information and training on the compliance compatibility that should take place in your office, we're here to educate you. Reach out when you and your team are ready to proceed with further education and help make your business a safe space. Let us know how we can guide you to running a safe space.
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