Legal workplace compliance issues have become a “hot topic” for companies today. Sure, conflicts come up in any work environment and that’s part of the cost of doing business. You have so many different personalities, roles, and expectations that it’s simply impossible for things to be “smooth sailing” all the time.
However, some employees cross the boundary between conflict and compliance—and when this happens you need an effective strategy for addressing the problem before it gets out of hand. Just as the working world is evolving at a breakneck pace, so are the compliance issues we are facing today.
Sexual harassment is absolutely illegal and should never be tolerated in the workplace, regardless of gender. However, the unfortunate reality is that we are still seeing a rise in sexual harassment in many states today.
Sexual harassment may include:
Sexual harassment is a proven path to creating a hostile work environment and that’s why the best companies spend time educating their employees on the topic.
Keep in mind that harassment can come from anyone involved with the company, not just employees. For example, harassment can come from:
Workplace bullying is another issue affecting businesses all over the nation. According to Dr. Gary Namie, the National Director of The Healthy Workplace Bill, workplace bullying is on the rise and becoming a huge concern for businesses and employees.
When a person is being bullied at work you might notice:
One of the best ways to address this issue is to enforce a zero workplace bullying policy. This policy should be read and signed by all employees and workers in the company to ensure that everyone knows what is expected of them.
When implementing a policy like this, it’s important that you spell out the consequences for any bullying behavior that takes place. Management should have a clear plan of action and follow up with any reports that workplace bullying is taking place as soon as they learn about it. Addressing the matter quickly may help you avoid costly legal expenses in the long run and it will absolutely help you maintain a more positive work environment for your team.
When it comes to legal compliance issues, the best approach is a swift one. Far too often businesses wait until the issue has gotten so far out of hand that legal action is the inevitable conclusion. However, if you create a culture of accountability and put in the time to educate your management and staff about your policies on a regular basis, you’ll be less likely to face compliance issues over time