Leslie Moonves is a rainmaker and a kingmaker. As the chief executive of CBS, he transformed the television network from last place to most watched. He’s made careers, and he has made a fortune, for himself and for his employer. And that’s probably why the CBS board decided to let him keep his job despite allegations ..
.. When employers receive sexual harassment complaints, they most often try to keep them quiet or retaliate against the victim. They’re afraid that losing their stars will dim the company’s prospects.
.. But corporate boards and managers need to wake up to the reality that sexual harassers, no matter how important they seem, do incredible harm to their companies. They desiccate a culture, draining employees’ motivation. They push qualified employees to leave. And they make their companies vulnerable to a backlash when the problems eventually come to light. It’s stupid, financially, to keep those men around.
.. A study from Harvard Business School looked at the impact of “toxic workers” — those whose behavior harms employees and companies — using data on more than 58,000 employees, from 11 different companies. It found that keeping such a worker, even one who is so productive that a company would have to hire more people to make up for letting him go, was an unwise wager. One toxic worker costs a company about $12,500 in employee turnover alone, yet on average added only about $5,300 to the business. And that doesn’t account for productivity losses or litigation fees.
.. The price for victims of harassment is clear. In a study by three sociologists of survey and interview data of employed women in Minnesota, 80 percent of those who reported experiencing harassment said they had changed jobs two years later, and many also reported “greater financial stress.”
.. That turnover costs companies, too. It’s expensive to recruit and train new employees: Replacing someone costs, on average, nearly $7,000 at an American company, according to research by Deloitte.
.. for those directly affected and for their co-workers. A 2007 review of research by two psychologists and a business school professor found that the most common reaction to experiencing harassment is to withdraw from work, neglecting tasks or simply calling in sick. An employer shoulders that burden, too. The reduction in productivity has been found to cost $22,500, on average, for each person affected by sexual harassment... CBS appears to be a case study in how behavior at the top of a company can trickle down... The biggest predictor of harassment in the workplace, according to a landmark report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, is a toxic culture.. Travis Kalanick resigned as chief executive of Uber last June after a series of scandals involving accusations of sexual harassment and discrimination, but he has bought a controlling stake in another company and again assumed the position of chief executive.