Friday, July 09, 2010

Questions that Will Come Up About Your Workplace Complaint

Here's a sampling of some the questions you will have to answer, during an internal or external investigation.

PLEASE NOTE: If your company is trying to cover-up what really happened to you, HR will likely have far fewer questions for you. An external investigation should be extremely detailed and thorough. Now for the questions:

--What specifically happened?

--Who's involved?

--What comments were made?

--How did you respond?

--Did anyone witness what happened?

--What day and time did this occur?

--Was this a one-time incident?

-- If not, how many times did this happen? (Describe each situation)

--Is it still continuing? If so, what was the most recent incident?

Tangible employment actions are any actions taken by employers or their agents that impact hiring, firing, promotions, transfers, disability etc. If you think you're the victim of a tangible employment impact, you really need to be specific about what's going on.

--Describe the impact. (State the professional and personal consequences that occurred as a result of the actions taken against you)

--Describe how certain actions led to you being denied a promotion or terminated from your job, etc.

--Are you now being subjected to an offensive work environment marked by intimidation, harassment, bullying, disparate/unequal treatment, etc.? If so, describe these conditions.

--How did you respond to the situation?

--Who did you speak to/report the incident to? List dates, times, and responses.

--What specifically did you tell them? Describe fully—this will help you keep track of what authority figures knew and when they knew it.

--Did you correspond with your superiors or Human Resources in writing? If so, list names, dates of correspondence, and responses.

(Note: If you participate in face-to-face meetings, you should always follow-up the meetings with a quick email in order to create an undeniable record of what transpired.)

--Did you address the individual who is the perpetrator of this incident? What was their response? Did you come to a solution?

--Who are your witnesses? List their names, titles, and the dates of incidences they observed.

--Who else has been harassed, etc. by this person? List their names and any information that is available regarding their harassment, including dates or the approximate time frame of the mistreatment and illegal activities.

--Does the perpetrator have any outstanding complaints against him/her? List specifics, if available.

--How would you like to resolve this issue?

--What would you like to happen? (Your dream scenario)

--What is the minimum that you would find as an acceptable solution to resolve the problem? For instance, you may only want an apology from the perpetrator or you may want an apology, restitution of your salary, and the perpetrator to be placed in training that is appropriate for the offense they committed (e.g., diversity training).


Anonymous Uhura said...

I serve as an EEO Counselor as a collateral duty @ work & this is an excellent article.

Doing EEO Counseling can be very frustrating and extremely difficult at times because complainants (without exception) want to have an emotional catharsis instead of specifying what unfair employment actions took place and the effects. This can make an EEO Counseling session a THREE HOUR enterprise - I kid you not.

If you have a workplace issue PLEASE stop to think
1) what unfair actions were taken or are being taken against you
2) what made those actions unfair
3) do you suspect that the unfair actions were a result of your race, sex, religion, parental status, age (40 and older), disability, etc

1) Rudeness is NOT an EEO violation.
2) Your boss / co-worker being less friendly with you than with Billy Bob is not an EEO violation.


9:54 AM  

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