Workplace Violence Prevention Compiled by Ce-Classes.com Learning Objectives
Workplace Violence Prevention Compiled by Ce-Classes.com Learning Objectives After completing this course, participants will: Identify aggressive behavior and anger triggers.
Describe techniques for managing anger. Identify the warning signs of workplace aggression and de-escalation techniques. Course Description This course reviews the incidence, causes and interventions to reduce workplace violence. The course begins with a theoretical overview of anger and
aggression while considering its impact within the work place. The course content examines a spectrum of destructive aggressive behaviors, warning signs of violence, and anger triggers. Communication skills and de-escalation techniques are also reviewed in detail as interventions for anger and potential violence in the workplace. The content of this course is designed to help employees learn how to manage their own anger and how to deal with others who are angry in an effort to reduce the potential for workplace violence. Anger arises and
aggression occurs o According to Novaco, anger is simply a subjective but normal emotional state that is agitated by some environmental occurrence (as cited by Hollin). o According to Glomb, Steel and
Arvey, aggression is a behavioral manifestation of feeling angry. (Berkowitz) Anger and Violence Emotions are a factor of the human condition, whether felt or faced. Varied human emotions can be exhibited in a positive or negative manner including anger.
Anger and Violence According to Novaco, anger is simply a subjective but normal emotional state that is agitated by some environmental occurrence (as cited by Hollin). Anger and Violence The
legitimate emotional state of anger is significantly related to aggression because aggression is a behavioral manifestation of feeling angry. (Glomb, Steel, & Arvey) Anger and Violence Berkowitz
made an interesting point, Anger arises and aggression occurs. Anger and Violence According to Neuman and Baron, workplace aggression is defined as efforts by an individual to harm others with whom they work, or have worked, or the organizations in which they are
presently or where presently employed ( Glomb, Steel, & Arvey). Anger and Violence For the purposes of this training we will focus on the implications of the aggressive behavior on an interpersonal level, such as colleague to colleague or towards
organizational outsiders. ( Glomb, Steel, & Arvey). Workplace Violence What is critical to understand about specifying the difference in definition between aggression and workplace aggression is the perspective of intentionality of the harm. For example, yelling at a coworker because he/
she cannot hear you over an outside car alarm maybe aggressive behavior but not an aggressive intentional act. Yelling at a coworker because you are angry they embarrassed you in a meeting; shows intent to harm another ( Glomb, Steel, & Arvey). Spectrum of Organizational Anger and Aggression The emotional state of anger is
neither good nor bad. Thus, anger can be constructive or destructive. The problem comes about when we dont know how to properly handle or when we lose control of our own emotions. ( Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Peacock) Spectrum of Organizational Anger and Aggression Constructive
Opening lines of communication with management for future development Channeling your anger into positive motivation energy towards your work Spectrum of Organizational Anger and Aggression Destructive
Not relaying an important message from the supervisor. Discontinue going the extra mile. Yelling at a coworker. Spreading false rumors about a coworker. Destroying property. Physical harm to a coworker or customer.
Spectrum of Workplace Aggression Sabotage Stealing Physical Violence/ Homicide Work Slowdowns
Gossip (Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey; Nuckols). Workplace Aggression Workplace aggression is not always about physical violence or homicides, although it does receive the most attention in the media and in research.
(LeBlanc & Kelloway) Workplace Aggression Although the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates homicides to be the second leading cause of workplace death, only 4-7% of these homicides are committed by fellow colleagues.
(LeBlanc & Kelloway) Workplace Aggression This extreme level of workplace aggression can be reduced by creating a prevention plan and simply being aware of our colleagues and organizational aggression levels. (LeBlanc & Kelloway).
Workplace Aggression First, take all threats seriously and inform management immediately. Better safe than sorry! Workplace Aggression Prepare for "what if" situations by
understanding company procedures and mental reflection. Workplace Aggression Your organization should have an action plan in case these extreme levels of aggression should occur, be proactive and know the plan or voice your concern constructively to management that the organization
should develop and implement a prevention plan. Workplace Aggression Also, you should internally prepare for this hypothetical event so you can remain calm and not be caught off guard. Workplace Aggression
Be vigilant of aggressive behavior and warning signs. At this point you might be asking yourself So how do we as proactive employees become more aware? Create a prevention plan and be aware of aggression levels. Take all threats
seriously and inform management immediately. Prepare for "what if" situations by understanding company procedures and mental
internalization. Be vigilant of aggressive behavior warning signs. Spotting The Warning Signs Being aware of our surroundings at work and watching out for changes in
coworkers level of aggressive behavior can help reduce increases in the continuum. Spotting The Warning Signs Stage one warning signs include: Unusual behavior changes Uncooperative with direct supervisor on a regular basis .
Argues with coworkers constantly Spreads gossip and rumors deliberately to harm others. Excessively hostile toward customers or coworkers. Irritability and anxiety escalates. Wood Holes Oceanographic Institution prevention plan for workplace violence Spotting The Warning Signs Stage
two warning signs include: Writes violent or sexual notes to other employees or management. Verbalizes desires to harm coworkers or employer. Sabotages equipment or steals property. Continuously disregards company policies and procedures. Levels of arguments or altercations increase with all personnel . Noted decrease in interest and confidence in work .
Wood Holes Oceanographic Institution prevention plan for workplace violence Spotting The Warning Signs Stage three identifies when anger intensifies resulting in: Depression or withdrawal. Property destruction . Physical fighting. Suicidal threats.
Use of weapons to harm others. Wood Holes Oceanographic Institution prevention plan for workplace violence Anger Styles: Classifying Aggressive Behavior Now that we understand the continuum of aggressive behavior in the workplace and how to spot the
warning signs, let us shift our attention to examine the three main anger styles: avoiders, exploders, and assertors. Classifying Aggressive Behavior Avoiders demonstrate a passive aggressive style by suppressing their anger internally. They generally blame themselves and feel that
showing anger overtly will cause others to reject them. (Peacock) Classifying Aggressive Behavior Avoiders typically also feel resentment and lower self-esteem or engage in passive aggressive behavior. For instance, deleting a coworkers project
whom made you angry earlier in the day without them knowing it was you; thus an indirect aggressive act. However, this solved nothing which usually leads to an avoiding becoming an exploder. (Peacock) Classifying Aggressive Behavior Exploders express their aggression in an outright verbal or physical manner.
They are generally enraged easily and are overly sensitive to criticism. Although expressing their anger usually makes them feel better, exploders end up hurting others and aggressive behavior continues to escalate because they do not solve the problem. (Peacock) Classifying Aggressive Behavior Without
intervention avoiders and exploders may utilize addictive substances, harm themselves, or commit criminal violent acts. (Peacock) Classifying Aggressive Behavior On the other hand, assertors employ techniques to manage anger and
keep cool when angry feelings starts to bubble. They effectively communicate to explain why they are angry and resolve the anger trigger. (Peacock) Anger Styles AvoidersSuppress
A form of passive anger. Suppress anger internally. Feel resentment and lower self-esteem. Engage in passive aggressive behavior. ExplodersExpress Destructive aggression.
Outward verbal or physical aggression. May hurt others or escalate behaviors. AssertorsCalm It Down Keeps their cool. Employs effective
communication and problem solving skills. Anger Triggers Everyone is angered by different buttons: There are many cultural and gender differences in anger triggers.
(Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Anger Triggers Anger triggers include but are not limited to: frustrations, annoyances, causal-reasoning style, adverse work conditions, rigid rules and procedures, aggressive
organizational cultures, mistreatments or injustices, and physical provocation. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Anger Triggers This paradigm demonstrates that an individuals funneling process of anger triggers indicates their
relationship towards reacting aggressively and provides an additional dynamic to guide proactive measures to reduce workplace aggression. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Anger Triggers Although our buttons get pushed, we
need to implement a strategy to efficiently handle the anger in a constructive manner consequently implementing an assertive anger style. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey) Anger Styles Since
we are all going to experience anger, learning our anger triggers as well as aggression controlling techniques will help us become better at managing our behavior and maintaining an assertor anger style. (Peacock) Reasoning Styles Causal-reasoning
styles deals with locus of control theory which states that people attribute successes and failures in different ways. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Reasoning Styles Internalists believe that their efforts
where direct result of the outcome while externalists believe that others are to blame or it was destiny that caused them to succeed or fail. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Reasoning Styles Attribution theory is closely related
to the concept of locus of control but centers on the behaviors and emotions resulting in their attribution patterns. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Reasoning Styles These theories support the idea of a
hostile attribution style in which associates within the workforce of predisposed toward aggressive behavior. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Anger Triggers Frustrations come about when something we
expected does not happen creating an inability to reach a goal. This many lower the persons self-esteem leading to an avoiders maladaptive methods of handling anger. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Anger Triggers Annoyances
are the everyday things that agitate us: you step in gum, someone cuts you off while driving home, or you are continuously being interrupted during a meeting. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Anger Triggers Mistreatments
or injustices include things like: ridicule, namecalling, being blamed for something you did not do, or a private personal matter has been spread around the office. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). Anger Triggers Adverse
work conditions encompass environmental stressors include triggers like overcrowding, extreme temperatures, noise or threats to safety. Here the same rule of thumb for handling rigid rules can be utilized to minimize the trigger. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey).
Anger Triggers And obviously, physical provocation triggers anger by providing an eminent fear of physical harm triggering a fight or flight response. (Peacock; Glomb, Steel, & Arvey; Rokach; Martinko, Douglas, & Harvey). How to Manage Your Anger
From Furious To Calm, Cool and Collected Know your triggers and avoid if possible Restructure your thinking Use relaxation methods STEP BACK technique Communication Problem solving techniques (Peacock; Feindler & Starr)
How to Manage Your Anger The objective is to reduce problems in created by the intentionality of dysfunctional workplace aggression by knowing your anger trigger and implementing strategies to calm you down. (Peacock; Feindler & Starr)
How to Manage Your Anger Knowing how to manage your anger and consequently control your aggressive behavior within the workplace will not only make the workplace more enjoyable - it will make you a more effective person and employee. (Peacock; Feindler & Starr)
How to Manage Your Anger However, it is also important to remember that not every problem can be solved. (Peacock; Feindler & Starr) How to Manage Your Anger Some
problems are detrimental and beyond the scope of this training program but focusing on handling the emotion by using the varied techniques mentioned will help you be effective whenever possible. (Peacock; Feindler & Starr) How to Manage Your Anger Chronic
anger can become uncontrollable rage. This requires more than implementing these techniques. Professional counseling is recommended if you have chronic anger (Peacock; Feindler & Starr) Know Your Triggers First,
pay attention to your bodys physiological changes so you can be aware of when you are becoming angry. Such signal include: pounding heart, tight muscles, nervous stomach, and raising your voice. Admitting you are angry is critical. (Peacock) Know Your Triggers
Knowing your triggers and avoiding them can help reduce aggressive behavior. (Peacock) Managing Anger Restructure your thinking
There are 3 main types of irrational thinking: 1) Overgeneralization/Over dramatization 2) Mind Reading 3) Labeling (Peacock) Managing Anger Relaxation techniques can help you
reduce the intensity of your anger to a range that is under control or removed. (Peacock) Managing Anger Techniques like taking a few deep breaths,
counting to ten backwards, calming visualizations repeating a positive mantra yoga exercises can reduce frustration and lower your agitating physiological responses. (Peacock) Managing Anger STEP
BACK Technique S - see the problem from the others persons point of view. T - take in what your counterpart is saying. E - examine the situation. P - pay attention to what is happening to your body. (Peacock)
Managing Anger STEP BACK Technique B - blend words of respect and friendship into your interactions with coworkers. A - acknowledge when you are beginning to feel anger. C - consider why you are angry.
K - keep focused in regards to the present and not the past experiences or grudges. (Peacock) Good Communication Communication Skills are tools that help you effectively handle the many different problems you face. Managing Anger
Using good communication skills is key to managing anger and avoiding aggressive behaviors Good Communication Involves Maintaining or Enhancing Self-Esteem Focusing on Specific Behavior and Outcomes
Using Reinforcement Techniques Listening Effectively Asking for Feedback Setting Goals and Follow-Up Dates Good Communication Although effective communication results in maximized productivity it can also avoid errors that are attributed to faulty communication.
Good Communication Can also: Maximize individual and team productivity Strengthen relationships between departments Improve overall job performance Move average employees towards
excellence Good Communication Focuses A on specific behaviors behavior is something you can see a person do or hear a person say. Good Communication
You should concentrate on a specific action and avoid focusing on attitude or personality. This reduces the risk of defensive reactions and hostile feelings. Good Communication Explaining the outcome of the
behavior helps others understand what behaviors you want more or less of and strengthens the impact of and effectiveness of your communication. Effective Listening Skills Listening is a skill that involves hearing and showing others that you understand rather then just telling
them. Effective Listening Skills Listening involves both the ear and the brain; making it an active process that requires you to complete action steps to listen and particularly to listen EFFECTIVELY. Effective Listening Skills
The true challenge of listening is not to add your own approval or opinion. Reflecting what you hear back to someone encourages more discussion and allows you to gather more information. Effective Listening Skills Be
aware of WHAT you say and HOW you say it! Effective Listening Skills Listening is a tool that allows you to: Ensure your understanding of information. Build trust with others. Give and get information through the
use of questions. Control a conversation to keep it on track. Effective Listening Skills 1. Acknowledging is the simplest and quickest way of listening. It means responding in a way that shows you hear whats being said and want the
other person to say more. Effective Listening Skills 2. Paraphrasing involves using your own words to summarize what you think you heard. Effective Listening Skills 3.
Active Listening is the third and most sophisticated level of listening. This listening skill identifies what the other person is feeling during a conversation or the content of a statement including the emotions involved. Effective Listening Skills Active listening is used in situations
where strong emotions are involved. You diffuse the emotion so that of you can use logic, resolve the issue, and stay on track. Effective Listening Skills Until the negative emotion is gone,
no progress can be made and your efforts will be in vain or misdirected. Dealing Successfully with Angry People Try to stay calm and keep control Acknowledge that the other person is angry Use de-escalation techniques Listen without interrupting
Try to understand the situation Emphasize that you are trying to help (Emanuele) Dealing Successfully with Angry People We not only deal with handling anger internally but we also need to know how to successfully manager external sources of anger whether
between coworker to coworker or when working with an organizational outsider. (Emanuele) Dealing Successfully with Angry People Remaining calm is the first step, if you get agitated that situation will
only escalate further and you will lose control. Keep in mind that the other person is angry not you. Do not allow their emotional anger state to infect you. (Emanuele) Dealing Successfully with Angry People
Use de-de-escalation and listening skill for a successful interaction, by listening without interrupting which will allow you to gain perspective on the other angry persons point of view. (Emanuele) Listening Is Critical
Listening is critical because it is the most important element for deescalating a situation. (Vanderbilt University Medical Center Universal Behavioral Precautions Techniques of Verbal De-escalation) Listening Is Critical You should: o Listen to the clients or coworkers frustration. o Empathize with their dilemma.
(Vanderbilt University Medical Center Universal Behavioral Precautions Techniques of Verbal De-escalation) Listening Is Critical You should: o Understand how they perceive the situation. o Find out what they want that they are not getting? o Address their concerns in a polite and efficient manner. (Vanderbilt University Medical Center Universal Behavioral
Precautions Techniques of Verbal De-escalation) Defusing a Situation Simply listening will allow the angry person to vent so they can release their frustration to an empathetic person who cares about their situation. Listening attentively by using non verbal and verbal acknowledgement responses.
(Vanderbilt University Medical Center Universal Behavioral Precautions Techniques of Verbal De-escalation) Defusing a Situation Although, the angry person is venting ensure that you are in control of the situation so it does not escalate. (Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda)
Defusing a Situation Employing the active listening skills will allow you to remove the emotion, in this case anger. (Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda) Defusing a Situation Once
the anger is reduced the problem solving can begin and the conversation can become more constructive. (Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda) Defusing a Situation Remember the this three step
process: Accept what they say without opinion Get feedback for content and emotion Stop for their responses (Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda) Defusing a Situation In very difficult situations, you many need to actively listen several times
to reflect the emotion accurately and build understanding. (Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda) Defusing a Situation Apologizing is a step that we forget to utilize because we are usually not to blame for the persons angry state.
(Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda) Defusing a Situation Apologizing is actually a form of defense impression management and when completed successfully reduces the potential for aggressive behavior significantly.
(Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda) Defusing a Situation You can obtain the same result if you sincerely apologize for the unjust situation they are perceiving without taking on the blame. (Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda)
Defusing a Situation Using statements like: I'm so sorry you having such an bad day" "I'm sorry the situation has you so frustrated. I am sorry that this has happened to you
(Ohbuchi, Agarie, & Kameda) Defusing a Situation Being aware of what is occurring is extremely important. Note when situation first escalates:
Louder voice Fidgeting or Aggressive gestures Vanderbilt University Medical Center Universal Behavioral Precautions Techniques of Verbal De-escalation Defusing a Situation Avoid arguing or defending previous actions.
Avoid threatening body language (dont stand with arms crossed). Vanderbilt University Medical Center Universal Behavioral Precautions Techniques of Verbal De-escalation Defusing a Situation Calmly but firmly outline limits of the
setting. If the situation continues to escalate, seek help from others Management should be contacted and may need to intervene. Vanderbilt University Medical Center Universal Behavioral
Precautions Techniques of Verbal De-escalation References Berkowitz, L. (1990). On the formation and regulation of anger and aggression. American Psychologist, 45 (4), 494-503. Emanuele, P. Coping with Aggression. New York, NY: The Rosen Publishing Group, Inc. Feindler, E.L. and Starr, K.E. (2003). From steaming mad to staying cool: A constructive approach to anger management. Reclaiming Children and Youth, 12 (3), 158-160. Glomb, T.M., Steel, P D.G., and Arvey, R.D. (2002). Office sneers, snipes, and stabs wounds: Antecedents, consequences, and implications of workplace violence and aggression. In R.G. Lord, R.L. Klimoski, and R. Kanfer (Eds.) Emotions In The Workplace. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. Hollin, C.R. (2003). Aggression Replacement training: Putting theory and research to work. Reclaiming Children and Youth, 12 (3), 132-135. LeBlanc, M.M. and Kelloway, E.K. (2002). Predictors and outcomes of workplace violence and aggression. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87 (3), 444-453. Martinko, M.J., Douglas, S.C., and Harvey, P. (2006). Understanding and managing workplace aggression. Organizational Dynamics, 35 (2), 117-130.
Nuckols, C.C. (1994). Reducing workplace violence. Behavioral Health Management, 14 (4), 5-7. Ohbuchi, K, Agarie, N. and Kameda, M. (1989). Apology as aggression control: Its role in mediating appraisal of and response to harm. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 56 (2), 219-227. Peacock, J. (2000). Anger Management. Mankato, MN: Capstone Press. Rokach, A. (1987). Anger and aggression control training: Replacing attack with interaction. Psychotherapy, 24 (3), 353-362. Vanderbilt University Medical Center Universal Behavioral Precautions Techniques of Verbal De-escalation. Retrieved March 22, 2009, from http://vumc.edu/deescaation. Wood Holes Oceanographic Institution Human Resource Workplace Violence Prevention Plan. Retrieved March 16, 2009, fromhttp://www.whoi.edu/services/HR/supervis/violence.html
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