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Preventing sexual harassment – Carter Backer Winter LLP

Preventing sexual harassment – Carter Backer Winter LLP

Background and Objectives
With the ongoing coverage in the press about incidents of sexual harassment and the likelihood of a statutory code of conduct on sexual harassment coming into force, the senior team at Carter Backer Winter LLP, (CBW), identified it would be helpful to give the whole firm a chance to understand more about what constitutes sexual harassment and the part everyone can play in maintaining a respectful and supportive culture.

Our Solution
We had a great starting point to work with CBW from. There was an embedded set of company values, culture, and clear policies in place.
As with most organisations, there had been the odd incident of comments and humour crossing the line, none of which was done with any intention to offend.
We designed a series of interactive workshops simply called “What is Sexual Harassment?”
We worked with the partner group first to ensure the right tone and behaviours were being role modelled from the top. We then worked with all the managers and finally all the team members.
All the workshops helped to bring clarity to what constitutes sexual harassment, looked at the myths around what sexual harassment is and helped all participants find practical ways to be able to address a situation where they or others are feeling uncomfortable.

Among the participant feedback were the following comments:
• “Has brought an important topic into an open conversation”
• “Very informative, I learnt things that weren’t just common sense”

Nicola Bell, HR Director has commented:
“This was an important piece of work for us to ensure we continued to live our values and maintain a respectful culture. We have seen greater awareness of what behaviour is acceptable within the working environment and how to interact with one another.

Focal Point’s approach is down to earth, interactive, and practical, which meant we had high levels of engagement in the topic.

We are now working with Focal Point to help us drive and support a two-year plan to develop the business in a fully inclusive way”.