Google’s latest sexual harassment incident shows lack of recognition and respect for diversity and inclusion
2nd November 2018
Google is the latest company to become embroiled in the centre of a sexual harassment incident, as the search engine revealed that they have released forty-eight employees from the company, included 13 senior managers
The sackings follow a strong of sexual harassment allegations from the past two years, the company’s CEO has revealed.
Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, said that employees who lost their jobs on the grounds of sexual harassment didn’t receive a severance package – although the legal fees and payments to victims of these incidents of sexual harassment amount to a total of $70million so far.
To make the situation worse, thousands of Google employees are staging global walk-outs in protest over their company’s alleged protection of senior employees accused of sexual harassment and sexual assault.
Sam Dutton, a developer advocate at Google, said:
“I’ve been working for 40 years in offices in the past, and I know that a lot of things were swept under the carpet. There is a change in mood which is a good thing. I think bosses are listening. How we make changes that have a real effect is more complex, it’s a longer project.”
This is another example of an organisation trying to sweep over underlying issues instead of living and embedding diversity and inclusion. Google have not faced up to the realities that if inappropriate behaviours take place the processes used need to be fair and transparent otherwise they will be held to account by their employees and customers.
Organisations recognise the importance of welcoming diversity and the need to prevent inappropriate behaviours such as sexual harassment, but it only takes one high profile case to cause major problems.
A work culture imbued with recognition and respect for diversity and inclusion will be more robust in dealing with inappropriate behaviours.
The ultimate aim for a company is to first create a culture that prevents sexual harassment via training and policy, and then develop a culture of inclusion via programmes such as mentoring schemes and connected conversations.
But it is the actuality that is most important – words are easy, but action shows more power.
Diversity training should support the creation of fair, inclusive and transparent actions, behaviours and cultures within organisations. This form of training is not aimed at being divisive it is focused on an integrated and inclusive approach to explain the benefits and allow all views to be heard.
This is something that Marshall’s is committed to in the development and delivery of diversity training. Our market leader, Diversity in the Workplace, is Marshall E-Learning’s original e-learning course It remains one of the most widely used courses on the subject today.