Over the past several years, laws have been passed in states throughout the country requiring business leaders to provide training on sexual harassment prevention, with California as one of the leaders on the list.
Sexual harassment training is mandated for all staff, whether in-house, remote workers, or those in other locations. That requirement speaks to each team and the company’s commitment to providing its staff with a diverse, inclusive workspace.
New interactive and engaging approaches have transformed what was once a boring model into a modern experience allowing staff to develop more of an understanding of acceptable behavior and learn what is unacceptable. They can comprehend repercussions when lines are crossed and determine each person’s part in establishing an inclusive, diverse, and respectful workspace.
Consider a few steps when developing an interactive, relevant sexual harassment training program in the next section.
What Are Steps For An Engaging Sexual Harassment Program In California
The California Sexual harassment training requirements are stringent, with other states developing equal requirements throughout the country mandating business leaders to provide their organizations with relevant sexual harassment training in order to establish a diverse, inclusive, and respectful work environment.
The goal of sexual harassment training is to help employees understand behavior that is acceptable and what is unacceptable, gain insight into the consequences of crossing those lines and help each staff person comprehend their role in creating a workspace of diversity and one of inclusiveness and respect.
The current training landscape is one that is interactive and engaging, translating it from the boring model it once was. What are some steps to take toward this end?
● Content needs to be custom-suited to your specific industry
The organization should customize the sexual harassment training for the industry and the workforce so employees can relate. Training needs to be engaging and interactive, held on a routine basis each year but with regular conversations throughout that year, including posters in staff-populated areas.
The suggestion from the EEOC or Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is to include varied video or e-Learning and other engaging tools so that business leaders can ensure staff gain adequate information from the experience.
That’s particularly possible when incorporating the CEO’s message to reinforce the importance and relevance of each person’s participation and what the company’s anticipation is when it comes to staff conduct.
● “Mobile-optimized” with around-the-clock access
All staff are on varied schedules making a uniform training program ineffective. More companies are implementing a “mobile-optimized” program for the convenience of the entire team, enabling them to access the training on an around-the-clock basis from any device.
Further human resource leaders have the capacity to provide new assignments, manage staff progress, and offer refreshers throughout the year to keep employees up to date and thinking about the subject.
Business leaders want to ensure their organization regards the topic all year instead of merely considering a once-a-year compliance obligation.
● Considering harassment in all its forms
Sexual harassment, harassment overall, needs to be considered in every form above and beyond unwanted physical contact. According to the EEOC’s definition of sexual harassment, it comprises “requests for sexual favors, unwelcome sexual advances, and other conduct of a sexual nature that interferes with a person’s job performance either indirectly or directly, is made a condition or term of employment or creates a hostile work environment.
It can also consist of offensive comments about a gender, though anyone can be the harasser or a target of harassment.”
● Training for bystanders
Training for bystanders is intended as an effective method for preventing misconduct before it can become discrimination or harassment. The idea is to teach organizations how to safely intervene when witnessing harassment in an effort to work towards avoiding incidents.
Bystanders present as allies for those exposed to harassment showing these individuals empathy and offering them a support system where they might have otherwise felt alone in their circumstances.
When employees believe they’re supported, they’re more apt to report the incidents feeling a greater sense of reassurance that they will be viewed more respectfully and taken seriously without the fear of retaliation.
Business leaders undergo specific training teaching them to respond promptly to complaints providing thorough investigations without retaliation against the victims.
California law dictates the measures to be taken with a complaint. Appropriate action should be taken immediately and following a thorough investigation. Go here for guidance on selecting a California sexual harassment training program.
Business leaders should serve as the example by which the organizations’ staff follow, providing a workspace of respect, diversity, and inclusion. Not only should sexual harassment training be offered annually to the employees, but it should be a regular conversation with posters and literature available in all staff-populated areas to encourage routine discussions.
When the subject is part of the company’s culture, victims will feel comfortable coming forward without fear there will be retaliation. Instead, the reverse will be valid. As is appropriate, the harasser will be fearful of their behavior.