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How to Conduct a Workplace Harassment, Bullying & Violence Investigations T...

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Minneapolis

Minneapolis, MN

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The EEOC requires that employers receiving a complaint, or otherwise learning of alleged harassment in the workplace, “investigate promptly and thoroughly…take immediate and appropriate corrective action by doing whatever is necessary to end the harassment, make the victim whole by restoring lost employment benefits or opportunities, and prevent the misconduct from recurring”. That’s a tall order to ensure a just and fair handling of a harassment complaint - an essential order that all organizations are required to follow. The investigation process is, perhaps, the most critical element in dealing with harassment. In cases that have gone to court it is often due to inadequate or absent investigations of complaints.

While there is no such legal requirement for instances of bullying (in which the definition varies widely), it is at the organization’s peril to not investigate bullying complaints. Employees and their attorneys are using various tort laws to bring action against their employer. Additionally, it is possible that an incident of “bullying” may be motivated by the target’s protected class and constitutes illegal discrimination or harassment.

The courts have opined that organizations must prevent and intervene on harassment complaints. The employer is required to demonstrate what it has done to prevent harassment. Not only is conducting an investigation a prevention and intervention tactic, but the HR professional tasked with conducting an investigation should be trained in how to do so—this also demonstrates prevention.

Even if you have been doing investigations for years – if you have never been trained, how do you know if you are conducting them correctly to prevent liability, determine the accuracy of the complaint, corroborate evidence, determine credibility, and form an opinion? This program will cover the intricacies of conducting a harassment investigation.

Learning Objectives:

  • To determine if an investigation is necessary
  • To discuss the steps of an investigation
  • To explore the intricacies of interviewing the accuser, accused and witnesses
  • To differentiate between a formal and informal investigative procedures
  • To determine credibility and reach a conclusion following an investigation
  • To write a formal report outlining the investigation

Course Outline:

  • Discussion about if and when an investigation is required
  • Comparison of a formal and informal investigation process
  • Planning for the investigation
  • Sample interview questions provided for the target, the accused and witnesses
  • Review of what constitutes a witness
  • Legal issues surrounding an investigation such as confidentiality, defamation of character, and false imprisonment
  • The importance of documentation of each interviewee
  • Examples of appropriate and inappropriate documentation and why it is critical
  • Specific details regarding how to corroborate evidence
  • List of criteria to determine credibility of those interviewed
  • He said/she said
  • The role of the investigator in forming an opinion following the investigation
  • How to follow-up with the target, accused, and the organization
  • The critical importance of an investigative report
  • The elements of an investigative report to minimize liability


Agenda

Day 01(8:30 AM - 4:30 PM)
  • Registration Process - (8:30 am till 8:45 am)
  • How to Conduct Harassment and Bullying Investigations:
  • 08:45 am - 10:00 am
    • Introductions
    • Overview of the 1 ½ days
    • Introduction to Investigations
    • Legal Issues of Investigations
    • Characteristics of an investigator
    • Case Study – “The Phone Call”
  • 10:00 am - 11:30 am
    • Interviewing – who, when, how, what, where
    • Case Study – “Taking the Complaint”
    • Cast Study – “Interviewing the Accused”
  • 11:30 am - 12:00 noon
    • The Cast of Characters, Identifying Witnesses
    • Determining formal or informal complaint resolution
  • 12:00 - 01:00 pm Lunch
  • 01:00 pm - 02:30 pm
    • More on Witnesses – who, what, where, when, how
    • Case Study – “Interviewing Witnesses
  • 02:30 pm - 04:00 pm
    • Decisions, Lots of Decisions
    • Documentation – protecting yourself and your employer
    • Case Study – “Witness Interviewing, continued)
  • 04:00 - 04:30 pm
    • Summary of day
    • Questions
    • Wrap-up
Day 02(8:30 AM - 12:30 PM)
  • 08:30 am - 09:00 am Meet & Greet
    • Overview of Day 1
    • Questions regarding Day 1
  • 09:00 am - 10:30 am
    • More on Legal Issues
    • Determining Credibility
    • Drawing Conclusions
    • Case Study – “The Decision”
  • 10:30 am - Noon
    • Writing the Final Report
    • Appeals
    • Making the Victim “Whole”
    • Consequences to Accused
    • Next Steps After Investigation



Speaker



Susan Strauss,

Dr. Susan Strauss
Consultant, Strauss Consulting

Dr. Susan Strauss is a national and international speaker, trainer and consultant. Her specialty areas include management/leadership development, organization development, communication, and harassment and bullying. She is an expert witness for discrimination and harassment lawsuits. She trains and consults with business, education, healthcare, law, and government organizations from both the public and private sector.

Dr. Strauss has authored over 30 book chapters, books, and articles in professional journals. She has been featured on 20/20, CBS Evening News, and other television and radio programs as well as interviewed for newspaper and journal articles.

She has a doctorate in organizational leadership, is a registered nurse with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and human services, a master’s degree in community health, and a professional certificate in training and development.


Please contact the event manager Marilyn below for the following:
- Discounts for registering 5 or more participants.
- If you company requires a price quotation.
Event Manager Contact: marilyn.b.turner(at)nyeventslist.com
You can also contact us if you require a visa invitation letter, after ticket purchase.
We can also provide a certificate of completion for this event if required.

NO REFUNDS OR TRANSFER ALLOWED ON REGISTRATIONS
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Minneapolis, MN

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