Creating a Healthy Business Environment

a woman in a red shirt

The final months of 2017 saw the United States experience a long-overdue reckoning regarding sexual misconduct in the workplace. The dam broke with the allegations of sexual abuse against famed producer Harvey Weinstein. Since then, dozens of other men have been implicated, and a lot of people are wondering who is next. Politicians, businessmen, and even celebrity chefs have been accused of wrongdoing. Good businesses will want to create a healthy environment for their employees. A healthy environment covers a lot more than just the right to not be groped in the break room. It includes things like encouraging your employees to better themselves.

Addressing sexual harassment

Some men have been complaining that they don’t know how to deal with women in light of all these accusations. That’s a bit disingenuous; any man with an ounce of self-awareness knows that there are some things that aren’t kosher in the workplace. You can shake a woman’s hand when you meet her, but you shouldn’t envelop her in a tight hug. A lot of this is common sense stuff. Don’t invade people’s personal spaces without their permission. That being said, now is as good a time as any to remind people of what is and isn’t OK. One way to do this is via sexual harassment preventative courses. Those courses include everything you need to know in one simple and easy-to-digest package. There may be some people who will try to push boundaries of what’s acceptable anyway, but going through the training removes any chance that they can claim plausible deniability. If someone does harass another employee, he or she needs to be dealt with swiftly and promptly. This may not mean the person is fired immediately, but he or she should be told very clearly that such behavior is not acceptable, and that there will be more severe consequences if it continues.

Promoting higher learning

A good boss knows that his or her employees’ lives don’t revolve entirely around the office. A good boss will know that an employee with a sense of balance is more likely to be productive than one who spends sunrise to sunset working inside a cubicle. You can encourage that sense of balance by offering incentives to employees who are interested in seeking more education. There’s a good chance that such education will expand their horizons and help them become better, more productive workers. Is your business figuring out how to accommodate a customer base that is becoming more international? In that case, you should encourage employees to look into obtaining an online international business degree. The economy is becoming more global with each passing year, and there’s no putting that horseback in the barn, regardless of what some politicians might try to tell you. Education is a great way to learn critical thinking skills, and just about every office could use more employees who are good at thinking through things and figuring out solutions to tricky problems. It’s an investment in the future of your company as much as anything else.

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