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Article

Bob Bowen, Michael R. Privitera and Vaughan Bowie

The purpose for writing this paper is to help develop and apply integrated models and methods of best practice that can prevent and manage workplace incivility (WPI) and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose for writing this paper is to help develop and apply integrated models and methods of best practice that can prevent and manage workplace incivility (WPI) and workplace violence (WPV).

Design/methodology/approach

This approach uses the framework of the public health model to integrate neurobiological, behavioural, organisational, mental health, and educational theory into a holistic framework for the primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention of WPV. The key concepts built into this model are those of organisational violence (OV), trauma‐informed services, and positive behaviour support (PBS). This approach is further illustrated by case studies from organisations that have successfully implemented safety protocols that demonstrate the effectiveness of such an integrated approach. This method is derived primarily from qualitative data based on the expertise and experience of the authors in the areas of psychiatry, social work research, and instructional implementation as well as reviews of the current literature.

Findings

This model suggests that understanding WPI and violence as reactions to a combination of internal and external stressors is key to interrupting these violent responses. Responding to WPV requires that organisations first take responsibility for their own role in generating WPV and recognize the impact of organisationally generated trauma on staff and services users. In this behavioural model, WPV and WPI have functions which require the teaching of replacement behaviours that help individuals to escape from these stresses in ways that do not cause harm to themselves and/or others. Thus, management must instruct staff how to teach and reinforce appropriate social and communicative behaviours in order to replace those behaviours leading to WPV and WPI.

Practical implications

The practical implications of this paper are that it provides human service practitioners with: an understanding of the functions of reactive violence at work; a methodology to identify different types WPI and WPV; a framework to proactively teach violence replacement behaviours, empowering people to address the causative factors in ways that do not cause harm to self and/or others; skills that can be taught to management and staff individually or in group settings, as well as to service users; and implementation models from various organisations that have achieved significant reductions in WPV. Another important outcome demonstrated through the case studies is that significant financial savings can be achieved through reduction of WPI and WPV which may in turn lead to a related improvement in the quality of life for staff and service users through changes in workplace practices. This outcome has implications for organisational practice and theory as well as human services education and training.

Social implications

One key social implication of the model, if integrated into the company's social responsibility policies and practices, is the potential for improving the quality of life for staff and patients in health care settings as well as employees, customers, and service users in other settings.

Originality/value

The originality shown in this paper is the way the three key concepts of OV, trauma‐informed services, and PBS are built into a public health model to prevent and mitigate WPV. This paper is of particular value to boards of management, organisational directors, supervisors, HR and training departments as well as direct care staff, service providers, and regulatory bodies.

Details

Journal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research, vol. 3 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1759-6599

Keywords

Abstract

Details

Journal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research, vol. 3 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1759-6599

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Book part

Michael P. Leiter, Emily Peck and Stephanie Gumuchian

Workplace incivility has been identified as a specific form of social mistreatment causing distress despite its low intensity. Research on workplace incivility has touched…

Abstract

Workplace incivility has been identified as a specific form of social mistreatment causing distress despite its low intensity. Research on workplace incivility has touched on a variety of personal and contextual factors associated with incivility’s prevalence including research on both antecedents and outcomes. The research has been especially concerned with identifying a wide range of negative consequences of incivility, including various occupational, interpersonal, and health-related implications. Theoretical explorations have considered links of incivility to sexism and racism, and its reflection of attachment styles, as well as its inherent connection with the stressor-emotion model of counterproductive work behavior (Spector & Fox, 2005). The power of incivility to elicit distress has been attributed to its capacity to signal riskiness of social situations that thwart core social motives (i.e., self-control). Intervention research has been relatively rare, but progress is evident.

Details

Mistreatment in Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-117-0

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Abstract

Details

Delivering Tourism Intelligence
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-810-9

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Case study

Gerry Yemen, Michael Lenox and Jared D. Harris

Suitable for MBA, EMBA, and executive education programs, this case uses the complexities of the oil industry to set the stage to unfold a stakeholder analysis on BP's…

Abstract

Suitable for MBA, EMBA, and executive education programs, this case uses the complexities of the oil industry to set the stage to unfold a stakeholder analysis on BP's growth and opportunity in the renewable energy sector. This public sourced case offers a discussion about the firm's overall strategy, post Gulf Oil spill, moving forward. The case describes how within a single decade, BP had emerged as one of the largest energy companies in the world. Within that scope, BP had an odd achievement: It had been building an alternative energy business and had gained a reputation as being an oil company with a regard for the environment. Then a series of preventable accidents, in the United States in particular, started to chip away at the firm's status. In a matter of five years, BP went from celebrating its most profitable period to finding itself selling assets while industry watchers wondered whether the company would survive after being responsible for the largest oil spill in the United States. Shortly following the Gulf oil spill, Robert Dudley, a legacy Amoco executive, was appointed to replace Tony Hayward, the beleaguered BP group chief executive and director. Besides the oil spill and ongoing cleanup, Dudley had slumping revenues (even before the Deepwater tragedy) and a huge rebuilding task ahead of him. Not only did he have a multinational energy company to run, but Robert Dudley had to rehabilitate the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem, compensate all who suffered loss as a result of the damage, and repair the firm's shabby reputation. Dudley needed to implement a sound long-term strategy. How would his former division—renewable energy and alternative activities—fit into his plans?

Details

Darden Business Publishing Cases, vol. no.
Type: Case Study
ISSN: 2474-7890
Published by: University of Virginia Darden School Foundation

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