Issue:claims about 2 million victims each year.
Risk: The resulting injuries and trauma translate to $13.5 billion in medical costs and 1.75 million days of work lost each year.
Action: Defuse potentially violent situations by taking the six steps detailed below.
WASHINGTON, D.C. , If you haven't confronted violence in your workplace, it's only a matter of time, says former FBI agent Gary Sheppard.
"The problem is so pervasive that
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has classified workplace violence as a national epidemic," Sheppard told HR managers and security officers attending the National Summit on Security here last month. In fact, he said, the Justice Department now considers the workplace the most dangerous place to be in America.
Despite common belief, though, most physical and verbal attacks emanate from customers and strangers, not current or former employees, said Sheppard, now executive VP of Prudential Associates, a Maryland-based security-consulting firm.
HR departments can be a flash point for angry workers. If you're confronted with someone threatening violence, Sheppard advocates these six steps:
1. Try to understand the person's mind-set. "In the overwhelming number of cases, the person just wants fairness," Sheppard says.
2. Practice 'active listening' by rephrasing what the person has said and asking clarifying, open-ended questions.
3. Act calmly, even if you're ready to jump out of your skin, and never embarrass or verbally attack the person.
4. Let the person vent. Many times, that alone is enough to calm him or her. "Visualize a big balloon that's about to burst," Sheppard said. "[It] must be gradually deflated rather than punctured."
5. Allow the person to suggest a solution. "It may surprise you that the person's suggestion may be very reasonable," Sheppard says.
6. Switch the focus toward what you can do. You may be able to call on additional resources to help solve the person's problem, such as an.
"If your organization hasn't experienced this issue yet, be glad," Sheppard says. "Do not, however, be content."
For more information, visit Prudential Associates' Web site, www.usainvestigators. com.
Like what you've read? ...Republish it and share great business tips!
Attention: Readers, Publishers, Editors, Bloggers, Media, Webmasters and more...
We believe great content should be read and passed around. After all, knowledge IS power. And good business can become great with the right information at their fingertips. If you'd like to share any of the insightful articles on BusinessManagementDaily.com, you may republish or syndicate it without charge.
The only thing we ask is that you keep the article exactly as it was written and formatted. You also need to include an attribution statement and link to the article.
" This information is proudly provided by Business Management Daily.com: http://www.businessmanagementdaily.com/1375/take-these-6-steps-to-defuse-a-volatile-confrontation "