Sexual Harassment: Leaders, Take Note

Has a watershed moment happened in American workplaces?

The tsunami of sexual harassment claims against co-workers and employers, and the resulting downfalls of powerful men is the first stage; now employees are watching, waiting and wondering what their employers will do next.

  • What will be expected of me?
  • Will it be “business as usual” once the dust settles?
  • Are workplace behaviors and expectations going to change?

A recent survey indicates that most employees expect C Suite types will tackle sexual harassment as a top workplace priority in 2018. Leaders take note: what are you planning to combat sexual harassment in 2018? Your employees want to know.

As described in this article by Lorrie Ray, Esq., of Employers Council, employers should take three essential action steps:

  • Update/ Create a Sexual Harassment Policy
  • Train Employees
  • Create a Culture of Resistance

It is fairly easy to accomplish the first two steps; indeed, Employers Council provides members with sample policies to include in notebooks and training class options including open classes and on-sites for entire workplace teams.

The third step, however, builds upon the first two steps and takes concerted effort and attention. As reflected in the NCHRA survey and other sources, support from leadership is essential for anti-sexual harassment efforts to make any meaningful impact toward creating a culture that resists harassment. If combating harassment is only considered an “HR Thing”, it will not succeed. Anti-harassment efforts must be widespread and pervasive, creating a workplace that is a danger zone for would-be harassers and actual offenders.

Employers Council has resources and expertise to help our members combat sexual harassment on all fronts and foster effective, successful workplaces. Contact us at 800.884.1328 for more information.