Respect@Work

Indigenous design Respect Shield

Managing Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour

The Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences actively contributes to the University’s commitment to establishing a safe, respectful, inclusive and rewarding work environment, free from all forms of discrimination, harassment, bullying or vilification. ​

We fully uphold the University's legal and industrial frameworks and policies governing workplace behaviour and will not tolerate behaviours that are inconsistent with the Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy (MPF1328) and the University of Melbourne Enterprise Agreement 2018.​

Each of us has a responsibility to behave professionally and foster a safe environment, demonstrating courtesy, equity, fairness and respecting the rights and aspirations of others at all times, in line with our Faculty values and our Diversity & Inclusion strategy.​

All of us in our faculty play a role in preventing inappropriate and disruptive behaviours from escalating. You may notice a range of concerning and disrespectful behaviours directed at another person in your work area. The MDHS Spectrum of Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour can help identify and talk about behaviours that are unprofessional, inappropriate and concerning. The descriptions of inappropriate behaviour on the spectrum are based on legislation, University policies and examples provided by MDHS staff who attended the Setting the Standard training conducted at the faculty in 2018-19. ​

Along with the spectrum, you will find general awareness materials, training options and other resources in this website to support individuals impacted by inappropriate behaviors in the workplace and to prevent these behaviours from escalating.​

If you witness or experience behaviours inconsistent with the University’s Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy and our Faculty values, contact your line manager and People and Culture contact. If this is not an option, you can contact the Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour Line on 1800 685 463 or online.

The MDHS Spectrum of Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour does not cover concerns such as theft, fraud, corrupt conduct, intellectual property breaches and conflict of interest, which are also addressed in the Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy. Consult the Policy on how to address these matters.

  • Spectrum of Inappropriate Behaviour

    Spectrum
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  • Response Options to Inappropriate Behaviours on the Spectrum

    All of us in our faculty play a role in preventing inappropriate and disruptive workplace behaviours from escalating. You may notice or experience disrespectful or concerning behaviours, ranging from unprofessional conduct to even bullying or verbal threats, directed at you or another person in your work area. It is important to take action on matters that make us feel uncomfortable or unsafe early, so that measures can be taken to address inappropriate behaviours before they escalate and present more serious risk to team members. If you are unsure what inappropriate behaviour is, review the MDHS Spectrum of Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour

    Below are some options that may be appropriate in response to inappropriate behaviours, depending on the situation, context and the potential risks and impacts of the behaviours, as defined on the Spectrum of Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour.

    Unprofessional & Disrespectful Behaviour

    Make a note but take no action This may be appropriate if someone has an unusual and brief, out of character outburst or reaction to stress. However, if this behavior continues or escalates, it is advised that you take action.​

    Speak to the individual If someone makes a poor choice or appears distressed, it may be appropriate to ask if everything is okay. This simple check-in may show the person support and help defuse the situation. ​

    Who to  Contact

    Your Supervisor​

    Your People & Culture team at mdhs-pc@unimelb.edu.au A team member will be in touch with you.

    Safer Community on 9035 8675 or safercommunity.unimelb.edu.au

    Harassment, Bullying and Threats, Injury & Harm

    If you are concerned for your safety and need an immediate response, contact University Security 834 46666 or Emergency Services 000​

    If this is not an option, contact the Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour Line on 1800 685 463 or online at mustaffcontactline.com.au)

  • Sexual misconduct

    Given the faculty’s focus on health, we are uniquely placed to lead significant change and eliminate sexual and gendered violence across our community. Behaviour that amounts to sexual assault or harassment is not accepted at the University and it is a responsibility for each one of us to ensure that all staff and students in the faculty feel safe and included and are treated with respect.

    The Sexual Misconduct Prevention and Response Policy seeks to prevent sexual misconduct and offer respectful strategies to assist students and staff members when an incident does occur.

    Reporting sexual misconduct can be extremely difficult. The policy outlines how sexual misconduct occurs, what to do if it does, and how we can prevent it.

    If you witness or experience behaviours inconsistent with the University’s Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy and our Faculty values, contact your line manager and People & Culture representative. If this is not an option, you can contact the Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour Line on 1800 685 463 or online.

    The MDHS Spectrum of Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour does not cover concerns such as theft, fraud, corrupt conduct, intellectual property breaches and conflict of interest, which are also addressed in the Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy. Consult the Policy on how to address these matters.

    Sexual Misconduct Prevention and Response

  • Handling Inappropriate Behaviour Complaints
  • Formal Investigation - Process Map (for People & Culture)
  • Supervisors Guide to Handling Inappropriate Behaviour Complaints

    Supervisors and managers have a responsibility for creating a work environment where people feel, safe, engaged and able to thrive.​

    If an employee raises a concern or complaint about workplace behaviour, supervisors must take action to prevent inappropriate and disruptive workplace behaviours from escalating. ​

    As a supervisor, you may need to intervene to help employees resolve conflict and disputes or address inappropriate behaviour. You may also need to seek assistance to resolve the matter. Choosing which resolution option is appropriate will depend on a number of factors, including the situation, context, type of behaviour and assessment of severity and risk, and the University’s legal and policy obligations. If you are unsure what inappropriate behaviour is, review the MDHS Spectrum of Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour

    We advise that you consult with your  People & Culture representative to assess the risks and determine the best approach.

  • Range of Dispute Resolution Options

    Resolution Options
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  • Difficult Conversations

    At some point in our careers, which can span around 50 years, we will probably be faced with tricky situations at work and may need to have a tough conversation in order to work through or resolve. And if we supervise or lead people, then tough conversations can be part of the territory.

    Brené Brown is an author and research professor at the University of Houston, Texas, USA, and has much to say about having tough conversations. Whilst interviewing senior leaders for her 2018 book Dare to Lead, and asking them what gets in the way of effective leadership, their highest ranked response was “Avoiding tough conversations”.

    “Over the past several years, my team and I have learned something about clarity and the importance of hard conversations that has changed everything from the way we talk to each other to the way we negotiate with external partners. It’s simple but transformative: Clear is kind. Unclear is unkind..”― Brené Brown,

    Click the tab for more information about what difficult conversations are and how to have them.

  • Giving & Receiving Quality Feedback

    Feedback is a natural part of our work. It can range from a simple ‘day to day’ remark on a piece of work to a more detailed and structured discussion about our performance, behavior and what we could do even better.

    ‘Day to day’ feedback happens regularly and constantly as part of our normal interactions with each other at work. More structured feedback discussions occur with your supervisor/manager about how you are going in your job.

    We can all give feedback to people that we work with including

    * our supervisors/managers

    * the staff we supervise

    * our peers and colleagues

    * people in other teams or areas that we work with or rely on to do our job.

    “Effective feedback is feedback that has the desired effect whilst maintaining the respect, confidence and dignity of all parties”. (NHS Northern Care Alliance, UK, Delivering Effective Feedback Toolkit 

    See the toolkit for tips and techniques for giving and receiving good quality feedback.

  • Managing Conflict
    Supervisors Guide to Managing Conflict Locally

    Some workplace conflicts occur due to a simple misunderstanding or disagreement. Others can arise from a much deeper underlying issue, such as a conflict in personality, political views, religious beliefs, and leadership and management styles.

    If left unresolved, these conflicts can escalate to more serious matters in the form of bullying, harassment and aggressive behaviour.

    Where a conflict cannot be resolved by the parties concerned, the supervisor may need to conduct an initial fact-find to determine what has happened and what action needs to be taken to help resolve the conflict. This may result in the supervisor leading a facilitated discussion between the parties.

    Tips and guidelines can be found below.

  • Who to contact

    Your Supervisor​

    Your People & Culture team at mdhs-pc@unimelb.edu.au. A team member will be in touch with you.

    Safer Community on 9035 8675 or safercommunity.unimelb.edu.au

    University Security 834 46666​

    Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour Line on 1800 685 463 or mustaffcontactline.com.au

    Inappropriate Workplace Behaviour Line, assistance and support contacts (including mental health emergencies services mustaffcontactline.com.au/inappropriate-workplace-behaviour-line

    Counselling & Psychological Services (CAPS) services.unimelb.edu.au/counsel

    Employee Assistance Program (Benestar) benestar.com/individual-wellbeing

    Emergency Services 000