Workplace violence has to be tackled at all costs

Workplace violence is one of the major impeding factors of productivity. Although the causes for workplace violence are deep-rooted and are a result of psychological, social and emotional factors; it is quite a problem at the workplace. Employees who behave violently or have a tendency for violence can always be a threat to the safety and peace of the employees in the organization.

What acts fall in the bracket of workplace violence?

Workplace violence includes acts such as acts of physical violence by which violent employees target their colleagues physically, disruptive and destructive behavior, harassment, threats of violence, and intimidation. In organizations that have workplace violence, a low level of motivation is observed. This affects productivity and hits at the organization’s self-esteem. Also, when employees who are victims of workplace violence file lawsuits; the organization suffers in other ways.

How does HR cope with workplace violence?

Workplace violence has to be tackled at its roots and has to be uprooted from there. HR should identify employees who have a tendency or potential or capability for carrying out violent acts. If this problem is identified in the early stages; there is opportunity for successful outcomes. It can deal with workplace violence in a number of ways professionally:

  • Encourage victims to share their experiences, as this will give them the confidence that they are being heard
  • Call both the victim and the perpetrator and talk to them objectively to create a case if there is one
  • Keep an eye on employees who boast about their capacity for creating or causing violence
  • Make sure no employee carries a weapon or objects that can cause injury
  • Survey the workplace thoroughly and sanitize it against weapons and harm-causing objects
  • Keep a record of violence and see if there is a pattern
  • Train other employees about ways by which to recognize early symptoms of workplace violence and supply them aids with which to protect themselves
  • Use professional help from professionals such as counselors or psychotherapists to understand the root cause and implement their suggestions

References:

http://www.usda.gov/news/pubs/violence/wpv.htm

http://www.masterclassmanagement.com/

http://www.hr.ucdavis.edu/supervisor/Er/Violence/Brochure

http://www.masterclassmanagement.com/ManagementCourse-DealingWithViolence.html

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