Another blog about sexual harassment – why?  Because it still happens all of the time, that’s why!!  I wish it didn’t, but it does.

As recent news events with a certain high profile political figure highlight, there are some things that many folks with power don’t seem to fully understand, including:

  • A mentor does not ask a mentee about their sex life, sexual proclivities, or sexual preferences (or tell about their own).
  • It is inappropriate for a boss to flirt with anyone reporting to them.
  • Joking about a cigar box and mentioning President Clinton, with any subordinate, is not ok.
  • Strip poker is not a good suggestion for an activity involving anyone you work with (even in jest).
  • Do not assume, ever, that anyone young enough to be your child (especially your grandchild) wants anything other than a completely platonic relationship with you.
  • Keep your hands, and mouth, to yourself (even if you like to touch or be touched); assume others don’t want you touching them.

Do I really have to keep saying this?  Apparently so.

Sexual harassment is a power dynamic.  Remember those reporting to you, when you have their livelihoods in their hands, cannot tell you that your behavior is unwelcome, or grosses them out.  Even if they appear to you to be enjoying the attention, it doesn’t matter!  It is your conduct as the supervisor that will be judged.

Can we just get everyone to stop being so darn creepy?