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Why Doesn’t Staff React to Possible Red Flag Behaviors?

Most people cannot conceive that their colleague would have ill intentions. Right from the start they are inclined to resist anything that challenges this perception. From our own research, Praesidium has identified four barriers that keep good and well-meaning people from responding when they see suspicious or inappropriate interactions or policy violations.

  1. What if I’m wrong? After all, I didn’t see anything illegal.
  2. Everyone knows that’s just the way he/she is; it doesn’t mean they’re a pervert.
  3. Even if I told, nothing would happen. Or the opposite, management will freak out and overreact.
  4. That’s not really my responsibility.

Fortunately, there are ways to combat these barriers, make sure everyone is trained to recognize suspicious or inappropriate interactions or policy violations, standardize how administrators respond to reports to assure everyone all reports will be handled professionally, and remind everyone that creating a culture of safety is everyone’s responsibility.