Unfortunately, the current difficult economic times call for increased vigilance to prevent workplace bullying. Downsizing, increased responsibilities, poor morale, and stressful work environments can lead to harassment, intimidation, threats, attacks, and other harmful mistreatment. This behavior in turn can lead to absenteeism, decreased productivity, high turnover (75% of bullying targets leave their jobs), litigation, and many other problems.
Here are some tips for preventing workplace bullying:
Background Checks – Conduct thorough background checks to ensure you’re not hiring a risk. Your company may be held liable for negligent hiring if an employee who carries out a violent act has a prior criminal record.
Drug Testing – Have a drug testing policy and regularly conduct random drug tests to avoid risks associated with drug abuse.
Workplace Violence Prevention Policy – Implement a zero-tolerance policy for violence in the workplace. Be sure the policy encompasses threats, malicious or insulting behavior, harassment of any kind, cyber-stalking, and intimidation.
Company Training – Regularly train managers and employees on company policies, including:
- How to recognize signs of bullying in the aggressor (including verbal threats, paranoid behavior, disregard for the safety of someone in the workplace) and the victim (such as extreme depression)
- How to report misconduct of any kind
- What to do in the event bullying comes from vendors or other third parties
Contact us for assistance or more information.