Workplace harassment and discrimination are more common than you think. In some instances, employees may be able to report the incident but more often than not, they are reluctant to report incidents for fear of retaliation or that they will be singled-out. As an employer, it is your duty to provide a safe and comfortable working environment for your employees – that’s something that you can only do when you’re aware of incidents and promptly act on them.
Recognize When Harassment and Discrimination Occurs
Your commitment to company policies and productivity is reflected in how effective you are in recognizing signs of workplace harassment and discrimination. Does a particular area have an unusually high turnover rate? Can you spot distressed employees and get them to tell you what’s causing their distress?
Be Able to Communicate with Employees
Regular communication allows you and your managers to recognize early on when someone is not acting the same way. An employee that’s usually open and talkative and then suddenly becomes reclusive is a sign that’s something is wrong. This could be about a personal issue but could be a sign that the change was brought upon by something in the workplace if actions are prolonged. When you encourage open communication, your employees will be more comfortable about discussing sensitive topics that will help you come to a solution if the problem is within your company.
Observe the Workplace
By simply asking questions and making yourself available for communication, you will be able to have access to concerns that may not be visible to you but are very obvious to your employees. More so, your physical presence alone is a major morale booster and can be a good reminder that any form of discrimination and harassment will not be tolerated when you’re seen acting on incidents right away.
Record and Analyze Employee Performance
Tracking employee performance can help you determine cases of workplace harassment and discrimination. Negative trends such as unexplained sick days, being tardy, and decreased performance of a normally productive employee can be because of incidences of discrimination or harassment. Although other reasons could be at play, it is better to be able to act on what you can change sooner.
Monitor Resignation Reasons and Turnover Rate
If good employees are repeatedly leaving your company out of the blue, it is time to sit down and assess what could be causing this. If they are being offered better opportunities elsewhere then perhaps you simply need to make a counter offer but if employees keep on resigning on jobs that they seem to enjoy, then there could be a deeper reason. Conduct exit interviews to have a documentation of reasons why your employees resign. Even if you do not find any cases of workplace harassment and discrimination, you’ll at least have an idea of what can be improved as far as your employees are concerned.
Keep in mind that different industries will feature different forms of discrimination. It is your responsibility to assess, monitor, and prevent incidents of workplace harassment and discrimination in your various work settings. You may use a reporting system and get expert help from private investigators to uncover issues within your organization. Your employees deserve a work environment that they feel safe in so that they can focus on their productivity.
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