Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Culture/Politics and Sexual Harassment

Lastly lets look at the factors from both sides of office culture/politics.


(M): Know the culture and the politics of the company. This is not restricted to the formal rules, but to the informal as well. Learn from others what goes on in the office, what is okay with them, and what is not. Learn who is comfortable within the office culture, and who is not. It may be that a close knit group is okay with certain behaviors or verbalizations, while others may not be. Know when it is okay to make a particular statement, and to whom. Know the culture. In one situation a boss became afraid even to say to his secretary that she looked nice, or to compliment a particular garment. This is overkill. Be aware of whom you say it to, and how you say it, but don't let paranoia persevere.

(E): Offices are like families. Different people come in and out of each other's realm in a fluid manner over the day. Some can be spoken to in ways that would not be okay with others. Make it clear who you are in the "family" and what is okay and what is not. Harking back to communication let it be known in a frank, but polite, and diplomatic way. Does the office culture/politics suit you? Can you change it? Can it be changed? These can be discussed, as in well functioning families."

How are these issues addressed in your workplace? What advice would you give to someone that is challenged with sexual harassment?

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