While the media engage in featuring multiple stories of Harvey Weinstein’s sexual predator behavior, what often gets lost is how this type of heinous behavior goes on all the time even in so-called civilized countries.
In my opinion the reason that this goes on is that — as with anti-Semitism, racist prejudice and a host of other despicable mindsets and behaviors — there are large segments of these civilizations that think these attitudes are acceptable.
And this is because we all allow these attitudes to exist, partly in the language that we all use.
Note that I am not advocating for language police. I am advocating for being conscious of what we are allowing to be said in our work places and social circles.
How many of us wince when we hear a sexual joke that describes women as “asking for it”? Yet do we say to the joke teller, “That is inappropriate and please do not say such things again”?
In my current role as Content Marketing Strategist at a digital signage company, I wrote a blog post inspired by the Weinstein media stories. The post described how internal communications digital signage can be used to curb inappropriate sexual language and behaviors. My boss said no to publication because he felt the post was too controversial, which it may have been for a business blog. (I did tone it down and perhaps it will now get the greenlight to be published.)
Yet the main premise of my post is very valid. People — and especially employees — need to be continually reminded of what is — and is not — acceptable behavior.
Having new employees sign a form that they understand what is appropriate behavior — and then never being reminded again of this behavior standard — is close to worthless. With today’s 24/7 digital bombardments, how many of us can even remember what we had for lunch two days ago?
To change harmful attitudes, and by extension harmful behaviors, we all need to be continually reminded of what is appropriate and what is not.
And here, for example, is where digital signage used for internal communications in office locations can continually remind people of what is acceptable. This content need not be boring — cute cartoons can get across the message. And companies can hold internal contests for cartoon submissions.
In the unpublished company post I wrote about the World War II slogan LOOSE LIPS SINK SHIPS. Then I suggested the slogan LOOSE HANDS SINK CAREERS.
If we do not want to see continuing media stories of sexual predator behavior by people in power, then we all need to change our mindsets. And that does not mean signing a form once. It means continually working on changing attitudes and behavior all around us.
© 2017 Miller Mosaic LLC
Phyllis Zimbler Miller (@ZimblerMiller) has an M.B.A. from The Wharton School and is the author of fiction and nonfiction books/ebooks. Phyllis is available by skype for book group discussions and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Her Kindle fiction ebooks may be read for free with a Kindle Unlimited monthly subscription — see www.amazon.com/author/phylliszimblermiller — and her Kindle nonfiction ebooks may also be read for free with a Kindle Unlimited monthly subscription — see www.amazon.com/author/phylliszmiller