Workplace violence prevention is the responsibility of everyone in your particular workplace.
What workplace violence prevention comes down to are really two things. Eliminating workplace violence, threats, harassment in the workplace, bullying, or whatever you want to call it, is a matter of knowing the signs. And from there it’s a matter of knowing how to deal with situations as they arise.
One thing is for certain: The worst thing you can do is allow any kind of harassment in the workplace to continue. Turning a blind eye to bullying or harassment is often just as bad as the person or persons who have committed the aggression in the first place.
It’s not a problem that’s simply going to go away on its own. And the first step you can take towards the problem is being able to recognize workplace violence. Once you know what to look for, you’ll be able to address the problem, and work towards whatever solutions are available to you.
Workplace Violence Warning Signs
Some of these warning signs of workplace bullying and harassment will be obvious to you. Others may surprise you as red flags for potential workplace violence. The important thing is that you’re able to spot them.
Any of these signs may indicate a potential for violence in the workplace:
- When direct or implied threats of harm are made.
- Inappropriate behavior that can be considered intimidating, threatening, confrontational, harassing or discriminatory.
- Repeated confrontations with fellow employees, supervisors, or other individuals in the workplace.
- Dramatic changes in behavior.
- Drug and/or alcohol abuse.
- Approval of violence as a problem-solving method.
- Approval of those who have used violence in the workplace.
- Depression over matters like family, work and money.
- A verbalized fascination with suicide.
Workplace Violence Preventative Measures
Workplace violence prevention is something everyone in your workplace can contribute to. There are numerous ways to address a singular incident, but in terms of preventative measures, try some of these ideas:
- Work with employees to create an atmosphere in which they can feel confident to report incidents or red flags without fear of retribution.
- Conduct background checks annually.
- Conduct a survey that allows employees to address security concerns, and offer suggestions.
- Control access with security cameras and keycards.
You’re welcome to add any of your own ideas for preventing workplace violence. Successful prevention requires contributions from everyone.