Think harassment is limited to celebrities and politicians? Think again.
It’s been an interesting morning.
Hours after learning that NBC had fired Matt Lauer over “inappropriate sexual conduct”, Minnesota Public Radio announced that it had terminated Garrison Keillor (of “A Prairie Home Companion” fame) for his indiscretions in the workplace.
What started as a ripple had turned into a full blow tsunami of revolt. Every day, we’re learning of even more sexual harassment claims in the workplace. And frustrated and newly strengthened employees are standing up to lift the veil on one of the most pervasive social issues in the American business sphere.
Certainly, sexual harassment isn’t new. And neither are the laws in California and across the country that have sharp teeth and serious ramifications—not only for those who engage in illegal behavior but those who either ignore or condone that behavior. The simple facts are these:
- Harassment is a hugely important threat to your business.
- The law requires you as an employer to have a well-defined and compliant process to mitigate harassment in your business.
- These laws are ever-changing, and new statutes and interpretations are likely to accelerate at light-speed in 2018.
- The threat isn’t just legal. There are the issues around how harassment affects your culture and your productivity.
- No business—small or large—is immune from these issues crippling their business.
We routinely work with our clients to not only provide state and federally mandated workplace training but to work with managers as well to create a safe and productive work environment. While my phone usually rings because health or worker’s comp costs are getting out of control, this issue may be of more value. Our team is a big believer that employees drive the profitability of a small business. You should too.
Area Manager Southern California