Allegations of harassment and discrimination within a place of work can have a damaging impact on your business. It is crucial for employers to create an encouraging and welcoming environment for all workers, while also taking claims of discrimination seriously when they arise.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission urges employers to use the following guide to ensure they are setting the right example. Not only will this help you avoid possible legal issues, it will also make your business a better place to be for your staff.
Make diversity a goal when hiring new employees
Qualified candidates for employment do not just exist in one particular group. The fact is that there are many amazing candidates out there, and expanding the pool of contenders to include all people is encouraged in the workplace. Standards for hiring should be objective and based on a person’s qualifications, not their appearance or ethnic background. The same push for diversity should also be present when it comes to promoting workers within an organization.
Promote inclusion in your workplace
An inclusive workplace is one in which every person feels welcomed. Respect for your fellow co-worker is key in this regard, which entails employees treating each other as equals regardless of any differences between them. Modeling these behaviors for your staff is the best way to promote inclusion. Along with treating others with respect, you can also take swift action when issues arise.
Implement a policy for dealing with harassment and discrimination
While taking the above steps should make for a healthier working environment, it will not completely do away with discrimination and harassment. A transparent process should be put into place to deal with claims against other employees. All claims should be investigated in a timely manner using pre-established policies. Employees should also be well-aware of how to report instances of wrongdoing, and it is recommended instructions for reporting should be clearly explained in employee handbooks.