Thanks to the #MeToo movement, far more companies are incorporating sexual harassment strategies. Going into 2021, businesses are evaluating current policies and looking for ways to improve.
With every year, there are new opportunities to reduce sexual harassment in the workplace. Companies taking the initiative and eliminating this issue are the ones employees will prefer to work for, making this a great strategy for attracting the best talent too.
1. Incorporate Sexual Harassment Prevention Training
Sometimes, sexual harassment isn’t intentional. Thanks to thorough training, employees change the way they talk to each other. This prevents accidental harassment. However, most importantly, it helps all employees recognize the signs of sexual harassment. One of the most important sexual harassment strategies you can start in 2021 is encouraging employees to report any harassment they see, whether they’re the victim or not. This has become such a useful strategy that some states have training mandates in place. These require training within a set period after being hired. They also require time for employees to ask questions.
2. Create And Enforce A Zero-Tolerance Policy
If you don’t have one already, create and implement a zero-tolerance policy concerning sexual harassment. It’s a seemingly simple strategy, but if you have a clear policy in place that includes how issues are investigated and the consequences, it does help reduce the problem.
Make this policy easily accessible. Also, include it as part of your new hire training procedure. Of course, you also have to enforce it. Tackling new sexual harassment strategies means following through. If you don’t follow through, employees won’t take the policies seriously.
3. Create An Anonymous Whistleblower Hotline
Every company needs an anonymous whistleblower hotline. By reducing ethical issues, employees are happier and more productive. Plus, you have lower turnover rates.
When it comes to sexual harassment strategies, this is one of the most effective. Allow victims and bystanders to report issues anonymously to make them feel safer. Plus, this helps reduce the chance of retaliation. Train employees on the process so they know what things to report and how the process works.
4. Eliminate Retaliation
Many victims never report sexual harassment for fear of retaliation. Despite retaliation being highly unethical, it’s a practice that still continues. However, it’s also illegal and can ruin your business. It’s vital to incorporate anti-retaliation policies as part of your sexual harassment strategies.
When retaliation isn’t tolerated, more people will report issues. They’ll feel safer and won’t have to worry about losing their jobs just for reporting harassment.
5. Choose The Right People
You’ll need a team to investigate sexual harassment reports. It’s important to not only have a clear procedure in place on how to do this, but also the right team. You should always have a variety of people from different departments, including both management and non-management. Having a variety helps prevent bias. Plus, if someone on the team is accused, there are others to take the lead on investigating.
Make 2021 the year that your company eliminates this issue by focusing on implementing new and better sexual harassment strategies.