The impact of workplace violence and injuries on employee productivity and engagement

The workplace is not just a place of employment — it’s a complex ecosystem where various dynamics come into play. These dynamics, positive or negative, affect employees’ well-being and an organization’s overall success.

impact of workplace violence

An issue that threatens this equilibrium is workplace violence and injuries. These unfortunate occurrences can significantly affect an employee’s ability to work efficiently and with commitment, disrupting both individual lives and the broader health of the business.

By understanding the impact of workplace violence and injuries on employees’ safety, productivity, and engagement, employers can implement strategies to foster a healthier work environment. Continue reading to learn more, then contact Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates if you’ve been injured in the workplace.

An overview of workplace violence and injuries

Workplace violence is a broader issue than many might realize. It can be described as any act or threat of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening disruptive behavior at the work site. This includes verbal abuse, physical assaults, or, even worse, conduct leading to homicide. Such violence can profoundly impact the victims, leaving them physically injured or emotionally scarred.

Workplace injuries, another significant concern, describe physical harm that occurs due to accidents or unsafe conditions in a work-related setting. These injuries can arise from slips and falls, lifting heavy objects, misuse of equipment, or insufficient training in handling specific tasks. They can range from minor abrasions or sprains to severe conditions like fractures, burns, or chronic injuries.

How do these events impact employee productivity?

Workplace violence and injuries can drastically affect productivity in numerous ways. The physical trauma stemming from such incidents often requires ample time for recovery, implying that the employee will be absent from work or operate at a diminished capacity. This period of absence or decreased productivity can impact the organization’s overall workflow, ability to meet project deadlines and team efficiency.

But the effects are not merely physical. The psychological implications of these incidents can be profound and long-lasting. Emotional trauma can lead to prolonged periods of increased stress, anxiety, depression, and even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), affecting an employee’s concentration, decision-making abilities, and overall job performance. This job-related emotional distress can also decrease job satisfaction and motivation, further affecting productivity.

How workplace violence impacts employee engagement

When discussing employee engagement, we’re talking about an employee’s emotional commitment to their work and organization. Engaged employees are enthusiastic, take pride in their work, and are willing to go the extra mile for their company’s success.

If the workplace is permeated with violence or has a high incidence of injuries, employees may not feel safe or secure. This feeling of insecurity and fear can drastically diminish their engagement. Employees who are constantly worrying about their safety are less likely to be fully committed to their roles or feel a sense of loyalty toward the organization. The decrease in engagement can impact productivity and contribute to higher turnover rates, further disrupting the organization’s stability.

Proactive prevention of workplace violence and injuries

Employers should prioritize creating an environment that minimizes the risk and impact of workplace violence, which will help employees thrive. This can be achieved through several proactive measures. For instance, regular training sessions on violence prevention and conflict resolution can empower employees with the tools to defuse potentially volatile situations.

Similarly, a robust reporting and response system can ensure that any acts of violence or threats are promptly addressed. Regarding workplace injuries, conducting proper safety training, providing suitable equipment, and regularly auditing workplace conditions to identify and mitigate potential hazards can play a crucial role in injury prevention.

Employers’ legal obligations and workers’ compensation

The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) mandates employers have a legal responsibility to provide a safe workplace. This means they must take all reasonable steps to prevent violence and ensure proper safety standards are met to prevent injuries. Employers who fail to uphold these standards could find themselves facing fines and penalties from regulatory authorities. They may also have more workers’ compensation claims filed against them.

Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance that may provide medical expenses and a portion of lost wages to employees who are injured on the job. If an employee falls victim to workplace violence or sustains an injury while performing work-related duties, they might be eligible for workers’ compensation. The program is designed to protect the employer from being liable for injured employees’ damages via lawsuits and to help the employee with the financial burden of injury-related costs. The more workers’ compensation claims a company receives, the higher its insurance premiums will be.

Employers must understand and fulfill their legal responsibilities to maintain a safe workplace. Doing so can minimize potential claims against them, ensure compliance with relevant regulations, and, more importantly, foster a work environment where employees can be productive and engaged.

Let us help with your workers’ compensation claim

Workplace safety is not just a legal requirement — it’s a fundamental right of every employee and a cornerstone of a successful organization. That’s why the Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys at Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates are dedicated to helping workers who were injured on the job.

If you’re looking for help with your workers’ compensation claim, our experienced team of attorneys can help. We can provide the legal guidance you need to manage the impact of workplace violence and receive fair compensation for your injuries. Contact us today at (800) 985-1819 for a free consultation.