In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, the world has shifted to remote jobs quicker than expected. With employers acknowledging the safety risks it would be inadmissible to permit employees to arrive at workplaces due to the contagion threats, the transition to work-from-home has evolved into the standard rather than the exception. Nevertheless, just as the operational setting has switched to a home-based setting, so has workplace harassment. In such environments, workplace harassment that pursues a worker into their residences can have extremely upsetting impacts on their cognitive well-being and their household.
Below, we have put together a series of red flags most often underlined by workplace harassment lawyers denoting harassment in remote work settings.
- Unacceptable Comments On Professional Channels
Workplace harassment, either in an office environment or a WFH situation, is not that uncommon. For example, unacceptable remarks in texts, emails, or team conferences all fall under harmful actions. Other instances are workers having “inside jokes” about other employees or including indecent jokes or pictures in business emails. But, likewise, leaders must lead by norm, and improper conduct must be notified.
- Remarks About Someone’s Appearance
Indecent remarks or gestures about an individual’s appearance during video calls are obvious red flags. If a coworker makes remarks or gestures that cause you to feel discriminated against or uncomfortable, alert HR or your supervisor instantly.
- Use Of Unprofessional Language or Obscenities
Workplace harassment in a WFH setting is distinguishable. It can literally affect your employee’s whole family if meeting interactions are unprofessional while household members are within earshot. Controlling professional language, with rarer expletives, is critical currently as people work from home, with their kids near them all day long in most cases.
- Awkward Tone and Gags
Workplace harassment can penetrate a work-relationship relatively innocently in a technology-heavy season. Employees who are used to engaging friends on social media with gags and debates can occasionally overlook the fact that their Zoom conference is a professional platform. Discrimination lawyers in Massachusetts consistently cite that this is the phase to cue employees about the limitations of technology engagement. Thus, their statements’ timing, tone, and content matter greatly.
- Too Many Chat Messages
While working in an office, you can go to an individual’s cubicle or office if you need to share your requests, preferences, or dislikes. Nevertheless, that is not a possibility in a WFH setting. If an employee receives multiple “team messages” via chat that are not work-related, this may be harassment. Inform them to stop the behavior, as their text notifications are distracting.
- Being Left Out Of Conversations
Being left out of discussions is a form of harassment. This will be more pronounced when some come back to the workplace while others don’t. Consequently, allowing employees to over-communicate and assuring all shareholders are conferred is more necessary.
- Female Employees Being Requested For Video Calls
Workplace harassment in a comprehensive WFH setting has a few avenues that were not unplugged from the WFH environment of the past. One such example is constant requests to female coworkers for video calls even beyond standard work hours and indulging in unacceptable manners on video calls. Leaders ought to look out for such conduct and take immediate remedial measures.
- Texts That Form A Hostile Environment
Harassment can always occur virtually. Employees should report texts, calls, or emails that form an unsuitable, hostile, or harsh work environment. Employers can help foster a safe and healthy remote setting by hosting virtual events on harassment and reviewing their existing guidelines.
So if you too have ever had the question in your mind, “Am I being sexually harassed at work?” now the moment has come to take serious action against the offender. But, first, please realize that the harassment problem exists and that reaching a comfortable reality will require a full-fledged strategy, and then being persistent in attempting resolutions to sort it.