HR managers seek help from our counselors for any number of employment practice issues. Workplace violence is one issue that surfaces frequently and is much on the mind of supervisors and managers. Often, the topic centers around dealing with potentially violent employees. Sometimes it involves, preparing for a difficult termination or developing a violence prevention program. We are also called in to counsel employees and supervisors after an incidence of workplace violence.

We should note that violence by “organizational insiders” – usually an employee or ex-employee – is only one type of violence; it is not even the most common type of work-related violence. More common are violent acts perpetrated by strangers, such as robberies. Violent acts are also often perpetrated by people the worker is providing service to: think of violence encountered by police, healthcare workers, or teachers in the course of their work responsibilities. Domestic violence that spills over into the workplace is another type of work violence, and one that managers often have to deal with.

Recently, we found a found an excellent 4-part series by Laura Walter, senior editor of EHS on Practical Preparedness for Workplace Violence.

Here are links and short summaries for each of the four installments:

Part 1: Warning Signs
Watch for these warning signs to protect your business from workplace violence.

Part 2: Disciplinary Mistakes
In the second part of this workplace violence series, an expert outlines six common mistakes employers make when disciplining or terminating employees.

Part 3: When Domestic Violence Becomes Workplace Violence
Domestic violence isn’t just a personal problem, it bleeds into the workplace, too. In the third installment of this series, a legal expert explains why domestic violence is a threat to the American workplace.

Part 4: Top 10 Action Steps
In this final installment the series, Brent O’Bryan shares 10 action steps employers can take to address workplace violence.

Prior related HR Web Cafe posts about workplace violence


These posts also focus primarily on prevention of violence by organizational insiders. To find resources for other types of workplace violence, use the search box in the right-hand sidebar.


When complex employee issues arise, ESI EAP offers member employers direct access to Certified Senior Professionals in Human Resources (SPHR) and senior clinical counselors. If you need an Employee Assistance Program give us a call: 800-535-4841.

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