Hello all. Please forgive me the fact that with my first post I’m asking for help. I’ve been a long time listener to the casts and tried to implement the principle of manager tools with some success. Thanks a lot for your help!
I found out last night about a nuclear briefcase situation that I’d really appreciate sounding the posters out on.
I’m a western male area manager in an Asian country and responsible for 8 sales outlets. I have 9 directs, 6 of whom are female, and they in turn are responsible for around 40 people, roughly 30 of whom are female. Basically I’m saying it’s a largely female company. It’s a growing company that has about 500 employees.
My new male, married western boss (as of July), who is at officer level, visited my area recently and went out for a few drinks with a few of my Asian directs. I was not there but he invited one of them back to his hotel room for some fun via text message. I’ve seen the messages and they are unequivocally sexual harassment. My direct is less than happy about this. She dealt with the situation as best she could but I’m really not sure that all my staff would have that ability.
1) My company has a slightly chequered past in dealing with sexual harassment.
2) I’ve head rumours about my boss’s previous behaviour that are not very complimentary. Just rumours of course.
Obviously I can talk to him about this but my goal is that it never happens again. My direct is just wishing the whole situation would disappear but I have not just a responsibility to her but the rest of the people in my area (and company). I’m lucky enough to have a great working relationship with the person who felt harassed but there are plenty of people in my area who might not feel so comfortable reporting this kind of thing. This is Asia and some stereotypes seem to hold water.
I see my options as:
1) Report to HR (not a fan of this because it’s still a small company and gossip and politics still play a big part).
2) Have a chat with him myself (not a fan of this as it doesn’t seem to be doing enough on my part to make sure others are not put in the same situation).
3) Report to his superior, the COO (not a huge fan of this as I’d expect him to want it swept under the carpet).
4) Put my hands over my eyes (just joking).
I’ve re-listened to the casts on sexual harassment and I think this is slightly different as it involves my superior. Thanks in advance for any help offered. By the way, I’ve just reread my options and if you are wondering why I’m still working here, so am I. I always tell myself that I'd like to be part of the change and I suppose this is a chance.
Thanks again and apologies for the long post!!