October of this year saw an onslaught of sexual allegations against famous figures in the media.
First, it was Harvey Weinstein — accused of sexual misconduct on multiple fronts with numerous women. Then Mark Halperin of NBC News, Kevin Spacey, film producer and director Brett Ratner, politician Roy Moore, Louis C.K., Senator Al Franken, Charlie Rose, Matt Lauer, and what appears to be countless others.
Of course, the fallout from these revelations have resulted in suspensions, firings, resignations, and in some cases, legal action. And another effect has occurred as well: management and HR departments around the nation are scrambling to prevent the same things from happening in their workplaces.
If you are concerned about sexual harassment in your workplace, here are 4 action steps you can take to prevent similar problems from arising:
- Ensure you have a strong sexual harassment policy in place.
No matter what industry you’re in, make sure that every employee is aware of and has a copy of your company’s sexual harassment policy. Ensure it is understood that your company has zero tolerance for sexual harassment and that wrongdoers will be disciplined or fired.
- Make sexual harassment training mandatory.
At least once every year, conduct mandatory sexual harassment training for all employees and employers. High-quality training gets everyone on the same page in terms of what constituted sexual harassment looks like and how it should be dealt with if it’s detected.
- Provide a clear procedure for reporting complaints.
Ensure that you have a clear plan of action for those who encounter sexual misconduct in your workplace. Every employee should know your company’s procedure for making private harassment complaints. It should also be printed in the employee handbook and publicly posted.
- Take allegations seriously.
When an allegation is made in the office, always follow procedure and investigate — without exception. Remind your employees that retaliation against anyone who files a complaint will not be tolerated.
Start Taking Action Today
Taking these important steps in your workplace will make certain that you provide an environment for your workers that is as safe and comfortable as possible.
Furthermore, if you are currently lacking any of these four steps, don’t wait to begin. Update your employee handbook, set up a company-wide sexual harassment awareness meeting, put an action plan into place for complaints, and set up sexual harassment training as soon as possible. ProTrainings offers a high-quality, 1-year nationally accepted certificate training course that can be purchased and started immediately.
Don’t wait until it’s too late to protect your employees and your company reputation. Take action against sexual harassment today.