One of the most common challenges of spending several hours in the workplace each day is dealing with different types of personalities. In many settings, it’s common to run into co-workers who are prejudice, which can create an uncomfortable environment. When you need to learn how to interact with the individuals, there are a few essential steps to take while remaining professional and create a safe setting.
1. Make Your Employer Aware
According to employment.findlaw.com, it’s important that an employer is made aware of the situation if you or another individual is being discriminated against or harassed. The employer has the power to enforce disciplinary action to ensure that the behavior is not repeated in the future.
You can also request that a written report is made or that an investigation is opened, which can lead to drafting legal papers. Employers must follow the law when dealing with discrimination in the workplace and will need to make a report. The coworker that is acting prejudiced will quickly learn that their actions and behavior are unacceptable and will likely change.
2. Keep a Record
One of the most effective steps that you can take when dealing with prejudiced coworkers is to keep a thorough record of each incident that occurs. Writing down all of the details in a journal or notebook with different statements or actions that have happened can allow you to have more proof that your co-worker has been acting discriminatorily.
Write down the time and date of each incident to ensure that you can stand behind the facts.
You may also want to review the company’s anti-discrimination policy and keep a copy with you to stand behind the statement when presenting the issue to your employer.
3. Educate Yourself
According to allbusiness.com, educating yourself is necessary to stay informed about the situation and what is considered to be discrimination and prejudice. If the situation becomes severe, consider hiring an attorney who specializes in workplace discrimination and can inform you of your rights as an employee in a quick meeting that you schedule. You can also discuss the issue with your colleagues to determine if anyone else has had a similar experience.
4. Act Quickly
Although it can be easy to brush off the issue because it’s uncomfortable, acting quickly will lead to a better outcome. Resolve the problem by acting immediately, which will reduce your anxiety over time. If you’re a manager and someone comes to you with the issue, determine a disciplinary action within the next day or two to alleviate any tension that may be present in the workplace. Responding quickly will establish trust with your employees and will prevent the issue from reoccurring in the future.