No employer wants to be subject to an employee sexual harassment claim. It's bad business, and it's bad for business. In addition, depending on state law, managers and supervisors may also have individual personal liability. Examples of certain actions include:
- Not taking quick and appropriate action for harassment situations that were known or should have been known;
- Aiding, abetting, or engaging in sexual harassment; or
- Retaliating against an employee for making a complaint.
To help ensure a workplace environment that is free of harassment, consider applying and establishing any of the following tips:
- Establish a written Employee Handbook policy specifically addressing a hostile work environment.
- Update the company's electronic assets usage (i.e. Internet, texting) policies specifically addressing sexual harassment issues.
- Train Management and employees on what sexual harassment is and how to avoid it.
- Investigate each complaint and report immediately.
- Document all information gathered in the investigation of a complaint.
- Don't overreact and stick to the facts. Managers and supervisors who do overreact and jump to unfounded conclusions toward an accused employee are held accountable as likely as those who do nothing.
- Communicate with involved parties while emphasizing protection of confidentiality and privacy as appropriately as possible.
- Keep aware whether following-up on specific cases or monitoring the workplace in general.