What Workplace Harassment Looks Like


When you think about workplace harassment, you may immediately think about the most high-profile stories of sexual harassment where a man in a powerful position harasses women. While those types of stories may dominate your news feed, they are far from the only types of harassment in the workplace. Harassment is any behavior that creates a hostile work environment. By law, harassment is unwelcome behavior based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age, disability, or genetic information. Whether or not harassing behavior falls into one of these categories, all harassment is unacceptable in the workplace.

Examples of Workplace Harassment

If you witness or are the target of behavior that makes you feel uncomfortable, you may ask yourself, “Was that really harassment?” The short answer is, if you find yourself asking that, chances are good that the behavior should not be happening. Take a look at following examples of harassment in the workplace. Could any of these happen at your store?

  • Distributing or displaying offensive material to other employees in print or digitally.
  • Changing an employee’s schedule or job duties because of refusal to date a supervisor.
  • Pushing religion on other employees who have expressed disinterest.
  • Wearing offensive clothing.
  • A customer requesting a different employee to serve them based on their religion, race, or appearance.
  • Assignment of unfavorable tasks based on an employee’s race or gender.
  • Making jokes, slurs, gestures, or stereotypical statements related to race, disability, gender, age, sexual orientation, or gender identity.
  • Tampering with accommodations given to an employee with a disability.
  • Imitating a person’s accent or disability.

Remember, harassment isn’t always between employees. Customers, vendors, and other members of upper level management can also be harassers. Managers cannot watch every interaction that goes on in their store. That’s why training on workplace harassment in the workplace must include an explanation of harassment laws, real-world examples of harassment, and clear instructions on how to report harassment.

Workplace Harassment Prevention Online Training

All employees are entitled to a comfortable and hostile-free work environment. All employers must provide a workplace that is free from harassment and discrimination. Online harassment prevention training provides the baseline of knowledge managers and employees need to handle harassment in the workplace. Click here for more information.

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