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The Practical Ethicist: Behavior bordering on harassment

Tom Tropp | June 13, 2017

We have a manager in our department who is harsh in her dealing with employees; I wouldn’t call it harassment, but it’s close. How do we deal with this without getting into a legal issue?

The line between what is and is not harassment is very thin; Once you’ve crossed over it, however, you generally know it. Any situation that creates a “hostile work environment” is probably a candidate for the classification. If the manager’s conduct makes her staff feel threatened or intimidated, you are probably there.

However, there are many situations, such as the one that you describe, that fall before that line and may not result in legal proceedings. They nevertheless may generate problems in the office and create an atmosphere that is less than ideal. These situations should be addressed; some good managers have shared ideas with me and I will share them with you.

  1. Bob G. says: Discourteous people often are dealing with personal issues that do not... To get the full story, subscribe now.