How Sexual Harassment Affects Team Dynamics

Sexual harassment in the workplace is a threat to employees, the company and the reputation of the company now and in the future. If it goes on in a business it can affect the business and ultimately the company’s survival. Sexual harassment in the work environment has consequences for everything from a company’s economical line to employee morale and overall reputation. 

In July 2021, the United Kingdom government proposed laws requiring companies to take proactive actions to avoid sexual harassment in the workplace. Employers are now accountable if they fail to offer a harassment-free workplace, as per the Government Equalities Office, a division of the United Kingdom government responsible for social equality. Organisations must demonstrate that they do have current anti-harassment policies and procedures, as well as up-to-date training.

Workplace abuse, including sexual harassment, is standard across the globe and has been linked to anxiety and depression, and injuries. But, so far, what do we really know about how sexual harassment in the workplace might alter team dynamics? It is, after all, a crucial problem. Not to add that harassment is a severe offense that should be addressed promptly.

Businesses that allow sexual harassment, or do not penalise it properly and promptly can be fined large amounts, they will have a high turnover of staff, and there will be a toxic work environment for people to suffer. 

Enabling high-performing employees to get away with more than what is considered to be appropriate for others is a frequent mistake business makes. Sexual harassment may harm everyone because it fosters a culture that makes it difficult for workers to thrive. According to research, sexual harassment is directly linked to work discontent and disengagement. Other workplace effects of sexual harassment include tardiness, absenteeism, project negligence, and employee distraction. Victims and witnesses of sexual harassment are likely to leave their jobs, leading to high employee turnover, recruiting, and training costs. A toxic workplace will also make it more challenging to attract top personnel. Moreover, research shows that when consumers witness or are made aware of “incivility” directed at an employee within the workplace, these potential customers can develop hostile generalisations, making them less likely to purchase from the company.  

If you witness harassment by a manager in a shop, or restaurant would you be comfortable shopping there or enjoying the food?  The same goes for office environments or other such work places. 

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