Having mutual respect for your coworkers does not start and end with simply following the rules. Mutual respect goes beyond that; it is the cornerstone of virtually every successful organization.
It is one of the reasons that mutual respect is covered within every organization's Code, and can be a key factor in an organization's reputation as well as it's ability to recruit and retain top talent.
What Does The Law Say
Federal, state, and local laws often dictate minimum standards for workplace conduct.
The law also states that you should not discriminate or allow harassment on the basis of any protected characteristic. This includes: race, color, religion, disability, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, age, genetic information, or military status.
Showing mutual respect to your coworkers also means prohibiting conduct that is harassing, bullying, or interferes with a coworkers' ability to do their jobs effectively.
Recognize The Impact
A common misconception is that bullying, harassment, or any other kind of misconduct in the workplace only impacts the lawyers and people involved, but this is not the case!
The impact that inappropriate conduct has on your entire workforce can spread like wildfire when a line has been crossed by an employee or other member of your team.
Some possible impacts may include.....
It can destroy communication and the overall flow of your organizational framework. In some cases, harassment and bullying are considered “organizational stressors.”
Worker Commitment and Turnover
Some experts believe that increased employee turnover is the single biggest element of the cost of harassment-related conduct. Workers are far more likely to leave their jobs if they feel the work environment is unfair or uncivil—including environments where bullying is tolerated.
Ability to Recruit Talented Workers
Studies have shown that candidates are far less likely to choose employers whose reputation has been impacted by harassment.
Others in The Workplace
Some non-victim employees who observe or perceive mistreatment in their organizations suffer an impact to both their mental and physical well-being due to empathy for the victim and concern that they might be the next target.
Proactively Foster Mutual Respect
By educating your employees on how to stop inappropriate behavior before it goes too far, you will be taking one more step to creating a winning culture. Proactively fostering mutual respect will reap benefits at every level in the organization.
Check out this Mutual Respect Guide for helpful tips on how to stop inapproriate behavior in the workplace.