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The 2020 Guide to Workplace Sexual Harassment [INFOGRAPHIC]

… and 9 actionable tips to stop it now

Posted by Katie Yahnke on January 30th, 2019

Workplace sexual harassment prevention has been a top priority for companies going into 2020 and will remain that way long after the high-profile scandals of the last year have faded. As a result, your company may have provided mandatory sexual harassment training to employees, consisting of vague definitions and clichéd examples.

But, if you’re looking for practical information about workplace sexual harassment, including recent (alarming) statistics and a step-by-step guide to preventing it, you’ll find it in this infographic.

Or, if you want to get to straight to the point, jump to the bottom of this page for the key takeaways from the infographic.

Bonus: use this Sexual Harassment Policy Template as a starting point to develop an effective, strong policy that actually prevents harassment at work.

Workplace Sexual Harassment Infographic

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Key Takeaways

  • Sexual harassment is defined as harassment based on the victim’s sex. It includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and any other type of gender-based harassment including verbal, physical and psychological.
  • Sexual harassment falls under two types: quid pro quo and hostile work environment.
    • Quid pro quo is an exchange of sexual services for gain or avoidance of loss.
    • Hostile work environment is any sexual harassment that fosters an intimidating environment for the victim.


Workplace Sexual Harassment Statistics
  • 8 in 10 Americans think that sexual harassment happens in most workplaces. But only then 1 in 10 believe it’s happening in their own office.
  • Approximately 90% of harassment victims do not file a claim.
  • More than half of women have experienced sexual advances. Of those, 1 in 3 said it involved a man from work; 1 in 4 said it involved a superior.
  • More than 80% of companies have made no effort to discuss appropriate conduct, hold training or change policy in the wake of #MeToo and #TimesUp.


Investigation Report Template

Summarize your harassment investigation in a professional, comprehensive report.

Investigation Report Template
Workplace Sexual Harassment Prevention
  • Clarify workplace and conduct expectations with a clear and thorough anti-harassment policy.
  • The tone from the top significantly influences employee behavior – make sure senior leaders are setting a good example.
  • Reduce risk by taking precautions. Go ahead – draw up that consensual relationship agreement and limit alcohol at office parties. If the risk is too high, reduce the risk.
  • Educate and implement training. Educate your staff to be more aware of inappropriate behavior, and better equipped to detect and prevent incidents. Try to avoid emphasizing liability during annual sexual harassment seminars. The legal burden is not the point.
  • Discourage bad behavior. A policy only goes so far if you’re not enforcing it. No more overlooking bad behavior and no more “letting it slide”.
  • Monitor the workplace and be involved. Know the warning signs of bad behavior and don’t be afraid to ask if things are ok.
  • Offer an internal complaint system (preferably with the option to remain anonymous). Then, teach people how to use it.
  • Support victims. Forbid retaliation and do what you can to provide safety and support for victims.
  • Resolve incidents. Acknowledge complaints, respond carefully, investigate quickly and discipline accordingly.

Katie Yahnke
Katie Yahnke

Marketing Writer

Katie is a former marketing writer at i-Sight. She writes on topics that range from fraud, corporate security and workplace investigations to corporate culture, ethics and compliance.

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