Ignoring Workplace Harassment Could Destroy Your Business

Workplace harassment was thrust into global consciousness following the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, and rightfully so. There’s no place for it in any business, whether it’s coming from leadership or occurring amongst employees.

Unfortunately, many companies still don’t address the issue head on. Recognition exists, but too many employees and business owners don’t think it’s happening on their turf. According to a 2017 NBC News-SurveyMonkey poll, 81% of respondents believe sexual harassment is a problem for U.S. businesses, yet 90% believe it doesn’t occur where they work.

Consequences of Not Addressing Harassment Are Severe
“Severe” may sound like an exaggeration, but it’s a reality. Avoid addressing harassment and your business may suffer irreparable damage. Recent statistics speak volumes: The number of lawsuits (up 50% in 2018 per the EEOC) and complaints (up 13%) indicate victims are taking action, which could be financially devastating to your business. 

That’s just from a legal perspective, though. If there is a culture of harassment in your business, it can have a significant impact on your business in ways you might not consider.

Impact #1: Morale. The emotional impact is significant — on victims and employees who may witness harassment. Unaddressed issues often lead to victims and witnesses becoming negative. And the problem only gets worse when victims feel there’s no avenue for reporting offenses or, even worse, they opt not to share due to fear of retribution. This harboring of negative energy often leads to a decline in morale and productivity, especially if management is aware of offenses and does nothing about them. 

Source - Read More at: smallbiztrends.com

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