uman Resources professionals are increasingly the targets of violence. The scope of the problem is underscored by the results of a recent survey, in which 1 in 4 respondents has faced some form of aggression at work, and a large majority think the problem is getting worse.
Have you ever been personally threatened by an employee (or ex-employee) with an act of aggression or violence against you, your property, or your family?
Yes: 53% No: 47%
Have you ever personally experienced an act of aggression or violence by an employee (or ex-employee) against you, your property, or your family?
Yes: 24% No: 76%
Does your firm usually provide security guards to accompany managers who deliver "bad news" to employees?
Yes: 17% No: 83%
Do you feel that employees generally exhibit more aggressive and violent behavior than they did five years ago?
Yes: 83% No: 17%
Are you personally fearful that an employee (or ex-employee) might attack you because of something you’ve done in the routine performance of your job?
Yes: 31% No: 69%
Do you think HR managers are at greater risk of experiencing personal acts of aggression or violence than other managers in your firm?
Yes: 71% No: 29%
SOURCE: Workforce reader survey, June 1998.
Workforce, September 1998, Vol. 77, No. 9, p. 22.