It is an organisation’s duty to ensure that there are policies and procedures in place to deal with both the effects of bullying and harassment, as well as those who are responsible.
Training for all staff, including management
One of the best ways to try and ensure that no bullying and harassment happens in the workplace is to make sure that everyone, including management, has received training about what constitutes abusive behaviour. Sometimes what is being done might not be seen by the person doing it as ‘abuse’, but more like ‘workplace banter’, but employees need to be aware of what is and isn’t acceptable.
Training should be given to all employees, regardless of their level within the business. This will enable all employees to see that managers are not being treated more favourably than everyone else and that the rules are there for everyone to abide by.
Ensure policies and procedures are in place
All organisations need to have policies and procedures in place for dealing with both the perpetrators and the victims of bullying and harassment. The company or organisation should take a zero tolerance approach and all employees, regardless of level within the organisation, should be aware of this.
Employees should be made aware about the existence of policies and procedures through training and should also be told how to go about making a complaint against another employee, what evidence should be gathered if possible, and who they should report any claims to. Employees should not feel disheartened if they don’t have any evidence and should not be dissuaded from making a complaint, if they feel it is genuine and legitimate.
Safeguard through observation
One of the best ways to try and stop abusive behaviour is to look for it. Most workplace bullying comes from management or those in powerful positions within an organisation, and the more people are aware of what amounts to bullying and harassment, the more people are likely to report it, even if it is perpetrated by management.
While you may not see it actually happening, you might notice a change in an employee’s behaviour or their work which may make you want to ask questions. Having said this, if more employees and management are aware of what is and isn’t acceptable behaviour, then if it is spotted, it can be dealt with immediately.
Hopefully, this has provided you with some of the tools you need to be able to nip bullying and harassment in the bud. If you are unable to do this, then there are some tips here for tackling it and ensuring the safety and welfare of all your employees.
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