Are You Unconsciously Fostering Harassment?

5 Ways to Find Out

With new sexual harassment scandals being uncovered every day, managers need to take steps to combat a toxic workplace—before it's too late. According to workplace culture expert David Hassell of 15Five, even well-meaning managers may be unconsciously fostering an unsafe work environment. Here are five leadership lessons to help managers create a workplace that's comfortable for all:

  1. Codify a moral compass. Spend time thinking about your team's values and developing rituals that support them—because a weak company culture creates an environment where warped values, harassment and objectification can occur.
  2. Create a culture of constant feedback. Create a structured system where employees can regularly share their concerns. Over time, this creates an open culture of trust and makes employees feel comfortable enough to point out inappropriate behavior.
  3. Ask yourself: are my employees safe? When you lead, you're responsible for protecting your tribe—and this begins at the most basic level of personal safety. Defending the vulnerable against the powerful is the mark of a true leader.
  4. Care for your employees' wellbeing. Foster close relationships with your employees that help you detect when something is wrong—and then, ask simple, caring questions like, "Is everything okay?"
  5. Help your team become better people, not just better workers. Help everyone on your team become the best people they can be. Responding to their basic human need to grow and develop will naturally translate to greater work performance. iBi

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