Some types of behavior are always inappropriate when in the workplace. However, you may be wondering how you can identify these types of behavior and know when you need to report them. Keeping inappropriate behaviors out of the workplace will boost employee moral and increase productivity.
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Know that jokes about someone's gender, race, cultural background, religion or other personal characteristics are very inappropriate. This is true even if it seems that the person is poking fun at himself, as it could also hurt the feelings of someone else. If this happens to you, try respectfully asking the person to stop making jokes about the particular subject. If the behavior doesn't stop, then you should bring it to your boss's attention.
Remember that touching someone else's body or making comments that are sexual in any way are always inappropriate behaviors. This type of behavior, both in and out of the workplace, could result in a lawsuit. If you are on the receiving end of uninvited touching or sexual comments, report them to your supervisor immediately.
Understand that dating among colleagues is usually inappropriate. However, this often depends on the company. In most cases though, relationships between a manager and an employee are inappropriate because they can cause problems in the workplace.
Consider possible instances of discrimination. Discrimination based on age, gender, disability, national origin, race and religion is always inappropriate in the workplace. An example of this might be when a company only wants to hire men for manual labor jobs because they assume women can't do them because they are women.
Realize that pushing religion in the workplace is inappropriate. For example, if a Christian manager is trying to share his religion with a new employee to make him feel welcome; this could make the employee uncomfortable. He might feel like he can't voice his feelings and discomfort to his manager for fear of losing respect. If you feel that a supervisor or coworker is pushing unwanted information about his religion, you should ask them to stop. If they don't, make a report of inappropriate workplace behavior.
Tips and warnings
- Sometimes people just don't take inappropriate workplace behavior seriously, and the only way to get them to stop is to report them to a supervisor. If someone's behavior hurts your feelings or makes you uncomfortable, you don't have to put up with it in the workplace. There are laws regulating workplace behavior to protect workers.