Career Advice

How to Handle Sexual Harassment at Work

Hire Bulletin 24 October, 2018

Despite it being 2018, sexual harassment is still a very real problem. Many companies are attempting to realign their policies on sexual harassment to better protect employees. These tips can help if you feel that you have witnessed or endured sexual harassment in the workplace.

Know Your Company's Policy

Do your research to find out exactly what your company's policy is on sexual harassment issues. It can be helpful in an encounter with the perpetrator to remind them of what is at stake. This can prove helpful when confronting them. Your first line of defense is always to stand up for yourself and to very directly tell the individual that you are uncomfortable and that this will not be tolerated. What you allow will continue.

Document and Report

You should document the incident or incidents, preferably in writing. This will help you when you report the problem. If you rely on your own verbal recounting of the incident, then you might become emotional during the telling and leave out important details. Putting the event in writing will ensure that all of the important information is shared in a calm and understandable way.

Go Through the Chain of Command

Simply telling another co-worker is not the same as reporting the incident. If you are serious about making this behavior stop, then you will need to go through the proper chain of command. Do your research to find out who you would take such a report to. Make sure you understand all of the steps necessary to report such an event so that small details do not hinder your efforts.

Sexual harassment is a serious issue and in most places it is a crime. You have a right to feel safe and protected in your work environment. Taking the necessary steps to handle sexual harassment is crucial to maintaining a safe work place.