Personal harassment is a form of workplace harassment that targets an individual’s personal characteristics, such as race, gender, sexual orientation, or religion. It can take many forms, from verbal or physical abuse to subtle forms of discrimination.

Identifying Personal Harassment

  • One of the first steps in preventing and responding to personal harassment is to be able to identify it when it occurs.
  • Common examples of personal harassment include derogatory comments or jokes about a person’s personal characteristics, exclusion from training or development opportunities, and being passed over for promotions or assignments based on personal characteristics.
  • It’s also important to recognise that personal harassment can be subtle and may not always be overt, such as exclusion from social events or team building activities or being given less interesting or challenging assignments.

Preventing Personal Harassment

  • Creating a culture of respect and inclusion is the key to preventing personal harassment in the workplace.
  • Employers should establish and enforce strict policies against discrimination and harassment and provide regular training on what constitutes personal harassment and how to prevent it.
  • Encourage employees to speak up if they witness or experience personal harassment, and make it clear that retaliation will not be tolerated.
  • Creating opportunities for employees from different backgrounds to interact and understand each other can also help reduce stereotypes and biases.

Responding to Personal Harassment

  • If an employee experiences or witnesses personal harassment, it’s essential that they report it to their employer immediately.
  • Employers should have a clear process in place for receiving, investigating, and addressing complaints of personal harassment.
  • If it is found that personal harassment has occurred, appropriate action should be taken, including disciplinary measures for the perpetrator and support for the victim.
  • It’s also important to note that legal recourse may be available to employees who have experienced personal harassment.


Personal harassment is a serious issue that affects many employees in the workplace. By identifying, preventing, and responding to it, employers can create a more inclusive and respectful work environment for all employees. It’s important for employees and employers alike to be aware of the issue and work together to create a safe and respectful workplace for everyone.

If you are looking for a way to educate your workforce and make your workplace a safer place, contact Sentrient for a free demo today.