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Tips for Workplace Violence Prevention

Many people go into work thinking about their latest projects, upcoming deadlines or new ventures. While all of these things are important, they fail to address another important issue that many employees face: workplace violence.  In 2011 alone, 458 workplace homicides occurred, according to the National Center for Victims of Crime. That’s 458 incidents of workplace violence that could have potentially been prevented. How can safety in the workplace be reinforced to avoid violent situations? We have put together a list of five helpful tips that businesses can follow to encourage violence prevention:

1.     Start With A Security Plan:

It can be overwhelming for businesses to contemplate where to start when addressing their employees regarding workplace violence. Many may ask, “What exactly are the risks that I, or my employees, might face?” Or, “How exactly do I address my employees without them feeling threatened or insecure about the issue?” These are all valid concerns that Huffmaster has more than 50 years of experience addressing. Through our workplace violence prevention services, businesses can assess their potential threats and create a plan or training program designed to help businesses recognize warning signs and how to handle them. Starting a security plan will make actively preventing workplace violence easier and more effective.

2.     Don’t Fall Victim to Believing Workplace-Violence Myths:

In an earlier blog, we wrote about some of the common myths surrounding workplace violence. Some of the myths we covered included:

  • Myth 1: Workplace violence is only conducted by fired employees.
  • Myth 2: Workplace violence is rare.
  • Myth 3: Workplace violence cannot be prevented.

Some business owners believe in these myths based on what they’ve heard in the media, heard from other employers or traditionally been taught to think. If taken seriously, these myths can, in fact, abridge your ability to ensure safety in the workplace. Make sure to address these myths with yourself, and then your employees. Don’t fall victim to hearsay. While these myths may be tempting to believe, they aren’t true and should definitely be addressed – sooner than later.

3.     Create an Effective Security Team:

In any industry, it is always effective to hire a staff to protect you and your employees. But, you don’t just want to hire anyone; you want to hire the best-possible individuals to ensure that everyone in your business can come to work knowing that they’re not in danger. To get an in-depth understanding of how to do this, make sure to check out a blog we wrote about hiring the right security staff.

We specialize in helping businesses find the right security staff by conducting an analysis, in which they assess your businesses location, personnel and needs. Once assessed, our team will also provide you with some of the nation’s most highly trained, pre-screened security staff members. Make sure your security staff is actually there to protect your business, rather than cause more problems.

4.     Build a Zero-Tolerance Policy in the Workplace:

Communicating that violence will not be tolerated in the workplace is crucial. Employees need to know that any type of workplace violence is not acceptable. Make this firmly known among all of your staff members, and accordingly react to issues as they rise. The more that safety becomes a part of the culture of your business, the more that people will come to work understanding that violence is simply not an option.

5.     Ensure that Everyone Has a Role in Enforcing Safety at Work:

Having more employees actively involved in encouraging safety in the workplace will help instill a sense of teamwork and cohesiveness among staffers. It will also increase the likelihood that employees will report or discuss potential violent threats with managers or business owners. Make sure that all levels of your business are aware that workplace violence should be either flagged or addressed. The more levels of your business that are involved in preventing violence, the higher the likelihood that potential threats will be caught before they escalate.

Workplace violence is definitely an issue. But, it’s an issue that can be prevented. Make sure you take steps to ensure that workplace violence at your business is addressed before it becomes a problem. Where should you start? You can start by contacting Huffmaster to get additional information about threat management, workplace violence prevention training and much more.


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Mike Saad, CPP

Senior Director Consulting Services at Huffmaster Crisis Response, LLC
Michael Saad is Senior Director of Consulting Services, Huffmaster Crisis Response, LLC. He is responsible for the security consulting line of business for the company. In that capacity he manages security program evaluation, corporate policy and procedure development, federal security compliance initiatives, corporate investigations, security threat and vulnerability analysis, and business risk management.
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