Why Many Media Organizations Are Unsafe for Women — HR Study



One would think the news media would be a safe workplace. But for many women, it isn’t. Nearly two-thirds of female journalists worldwide responding to a study say they’ve faced abuse, harassment and threats in the workplace.

The 2013 global study — conducted by the International News Safety Institute (INSI) and the International Women’s Media Foundation — reveals about 64 percent of respondents say they face such hazards.

Most of the threatening behavior was from bosses or co-workers. Regarding sexual harassment: 45 percent from co-workers and 28 percent from their bosses.

“When we talk about safety for the media, we often think in terms of staying safe in war zones, civil unrest and environmental disasters, but how often do we think of the office as a hostile environment?” said INSI Director Hannah Storm in a press release.

Hannah Storm

        Hannah Storm (LinkedIn)

“What this ground-breaking survey shows is that women journalists are often at risk in their own work places as well: targeted by their colleagues, and because they are let down by the very people they should be able to trust, the violence and harassment they face goes widely unreported and therefore unpunished,” she added.

Some 875 women participated in the study.

Here is the geographical breakdown:

— Africa (12.69 percent/111)

— Arab states (5.37 percent/47)

— Asia and Pacific (28.69 percent/251)

— The Commonwealth of Independent States (1.171 percent/15)

— Europe (19.43 percent/170)

— Latin/South America (11.20 percent/98)

— North America (21.60 percent/189)

Age-wise, some 41 percent were between 25 and 34.

More than 82 percent of them were reporters.

Workplaces where the dangers lurked: 

— Newspapers – About 49 percent

— Magazines – 23 percent

— Television – 21 percent

— Radio – 16 percent

A lesson for all companies: More than 400 of the women said their companies failed to prepare them for dealing with harassment.

In addition, my sense is that news organizations need to make harassment training mandatory.

The preceding data is just a snapshot. For the voluminous details, see the study.

From the Coach’s Corner, here are HR management tips:

 HR Tips — So Your Recruiting Enhances Diversity, Not Sexism — Can we agree that a diverse workplace leads to innovation, problem-solving and enhanced enterprise communication? And, as you know, inequality is unlawful. Why then are there so many companies that unknowingly, perhaps, promote sexism? 

How to avoid EEOC Discrimination Suits — Here are six tips for micro-companies and 13 strategies for larger organizations to avoid EEOC migraines.

Human Resources: 4 Reasons Why New Managers Fail — Best practices guarantee success for new managers. Not to over-simplify, but there are often four reasons why new managers are unsuccessful – ineffective communication, failure to develop trusting relationships, weak results, and a failure to delegate. 

Why Companies Fall into the Management Lawsuit Trap — News headlines continue to show there are a myriad of ways managers set themselves for lawsuits. Small and many big companies are ripe for EEOC complaints.  

10 Tips on Responding to EEOC Complaints — Despite all the court cases, warnings and complaints filed at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a study shows big companies are guilty of favoritism in their promotion practices. 

“In a fascist shift, reporters start to face more and more harassment, and they have to be more and more courageous simply in order to do their jobs.”

-Naomi Wolf

__________

Author Terry Corbell has written innumerable online business-enhancement articles, and is a business-performance consultant and profit professional. Click here to see his management services. For a complimentary chat about your business situation or to schedule him as a speaker, consultant or author, please contact Terry.

Lessons about Trust – 2 Deeply Disturbing Behaviors by Judges, Journalists in Wisconsin



Trust is critical in all professions. So are appearances.

But two developments in 2012 raise shocking concerns about trust and appearances in the rule of law and quality of journalism in Wisconsin.

Why? It appears in Wisconsin you can’t get a fair trial in nearly three dozen courts, and you can’t get objective reporting from a major news media company.

Lawyers are traditionally the butt of jokes. Now, 29 circuit court judges risk being similarly stigmatized in Wisconsin.

For decades, journalists have been accused of having a liberal bias. Now, there’s lots of evidence that tends to confirm the perception at least in Wisconsin – involving 25 Gannett Wisconsin Media journalists, including seven at the Green Bay Press-Gazette.

ID-100211536 Stuart MilesWhat do the judges and journalists have in common?

The 29 circuit court judges and 25 Gannett journalists signed political petitions to recall Gov. Scott Walker.

Yes, you read the sentence correctly. Twenty-nine circuit court judges and 25 journalists signed petitions that would lead to the recall of the governor.

Admittedly, I’m not a legal expert regarding the ethics of judges in Wisconsin. But as a lifelong journalist, I’m very familiar with the principles surrounding these disgusting acts of the journalists.

We’re not talking about just citizen journalists and bloggers. It’s an outrage and does harm to the professional image of journalists.

The good news is that the newspaper realizes the dangerous implications from such actions of its journalists.

“It was wrong, and those who signed the petition were in breach of Gannett’s principles of ethical conduct,” wrote columnist Kevin Corrado on March 23, 2012.

“Our journalists are expected to provide you with the clearest picture of the news as it develops – with objectivity and impartiality,” he added. “And, as readers, you must be able to trust that your newspaper is providing you the most complete picture, without bias of any kind.”

Strangely, many of the journalists told their bosses they saw nothing wrong – that signing the petition was tantamount to casting a ballot on Election Day. Great, the journalists can’t connect the dots.

Further, the problem is much bigger than the ethics violations in signing recall petitions. People are consistent. If so-called professionals display questionable judgment and behavior in one area of their lives, they are guilty of similar behavior in other ways. Count on it.

So the petition signings raise questions about the cultures in Wisconsin courts and newsrooms.

Mr. Corrado indicated that the Gannett journalists violated six of 32 company policies:

» We will remain free of outside interests, investments or business relationships that may compromise the credibility of our news report.

» We will maintain an impartial, arm’s length relationship with anyone seeking to influence the news.

» We will avoid potential conflicts of interest and eliminate inappropriate influence on content.

» We will take responsibility for our decisions and consider the possible consequences of our actions.

» We will be conscientious in observing these Principles.

» We will always try to do the right thing.

Actually, the six principles are transferrable and applicable for any sector or industry.

But questions remains: What about the 29 biased judges? What’s been done about their bias? If Gov. Walker hadn’t won the recall election so convincingly, his opponents would have filed all kinds of legal objections. What then? The governor has the last laugh.

From the Coach’s Corner, here are trust-related resources for business:

“I never trust people’s assertions, I always judge of them by their actions.”

-Ann Radcliffe

_________

Author Terry Corbell has written innumerable online business-enhancement articles, and is a business-performance consultant and profit professional. Click here to see his management services. For a complimentary chat about your business situation or to schedule him as a speaker, consultant or author, please contact Terry.

Image courtesy of  Stuart Miles at www.freedigitalphotos.net

Seattle business consultant Terry Corbell provides high-performance management services and strategies.