Discrimination and Harassment
Discrimination and harassment claims often increase in a down economy. Learn the proper techniques for conducing proper workplace harassment investigations, providing sexual harassment training, and more to reduce claims of employment discrimination and preventing sexual harassment in the workplace.
Sexual harassment runs the gamut, from out-and-out assault to unwelcome flirting. No sane employer would hesitate to fire someone who physically harmed a co-worker. But for less severe, isolated incidents, less drastic action may be reasonable—as long as it solves the problem.
Some employees can never seem to see that their bad attitudes and behaviors cause workplace problems. Confronted with complaints, they inevitably claim their subordinates or customers are wrong. When they’re finally terminated, they're quite likely to sue. That’s when it’s handy to have a performance appraisal process that uses 360-degree reviews.
When you have to investigate allegations that may lead to termination, it’s a good practice to conduct that investigation as independently as possible. That often means you will have to leave out of the picture any supervisors who have a negative history with the employee.
If you receive an anonymous complaint about a hostile workplace, launch an investigation right away. That way, if an employee later sues, you can easily compare what he said to the investigator with what he remembers now.