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Workplace Violence – The biggest mistake is denial

August 21st, 2012 1 comment

Workplace violence is a critical issue for employers to deal with and one of the biggest mistakes that many organizations make is to remain in denial that they either have a problem, or one could develop in their workplace. How often, after a tragic violent incident, do people who are interviewed say something like “I knew he would do something like this” or “he always made me afraid.” Often those who are in the best position to recognize problem behavior from an individual are the employees who engage with them every day. They know something is wrong but keep quiet about their concerns. They expect that someone should be doing something about an issue but don’t know whether to report what they see, or are afraid to. This is not the employee’s fault. It is the fault of an insufficient or nonexistent policy regarding the reporting of aggressive behavior. Not reporting inappropriate aggression can stem from a number of reasons including but not limited to:

  • Fear of repercussions from the individual in question
  • Not knowing when a behavior is deemed unacceptable and must be reported
  • Not knowing to whom or how to report the behavior
  • No assurance that there will be a follow up by a supervisor

All of these reasons can be addressed with an effective workplace violence prevention policy that is enforced and is an employment compliance requirement. Workplace violence prevention policies must address inappropriate intimidation through language, gestures, direct and indirect threats, or any other aggressive conduct that instills fear into other employees. Furthermore, employees should be trained to recognize such behavior as unacceptable and require that the conduct be reported to supervisory personnel. Supervisory personnel also have to be trained in how to investigate such reports and follow up with those designated within the company to handle such matters.

Bullying is the simplest, and usually the beginning form of violence in the workplace. If bullies are allowed to intimidate using inappropriate behavior, they will soon get even more brazen in their tactics. If an employee uses intimidation and fear to influence others in the workplace they will often go undetected just because of the nature of their tactics. No one wants to upset them. The conduct continues and the perpetrator assumes that the conduct, since it is being tolerated, is acceptable. If the workplace violence prevention policy does not force action by those who are experiencing the behavior, then the bully becomes empowered, and in their own minds, become even more dangerous.

Denial is even more evident when ongoing conduct is finally reported, or a mildly violent incident occurs, and no action to investigate or correct the behavior is taken. This will assure that the bully will continue the intimidating behavior. Others may even mimic the aggression since it seems to be tolerated. Soon the behavior can take on a more violent form when people begin to fight back. Eventually the workplace becomes a hostile environment. No matter whom the aggressor is, the behavior must be addressed and stopped or consequences, including termination, should result. Don’t transfer the person out to another department hoping they will change their behavior.  Don’t promote them and don’t make excuses – correct the behavior.

Now, if termination does become necessary, that should be done carefully as well. Safe terminations will be another topic to be addressed in the future. For more information regarding workplace violence prevention, safe terminations, bullying prevention, employee training and other related topics check out the Workplace Violence Series on our website at www.imac-training.com

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AFIMAC Security Expands into Latin America

August 15th, 2012 Comments off

North American Security and Crisis Response Leader Acquires Mena International Group, Extending its Expertise to Latin America

CLEVELAND, OHAugust 14, 2012AFIMAC, a North American leader in corporate security and crisis response has announced its acquisition of Mena International Group, specialists in security, investigations and crisis response within Latin America. The buy-out comes just two weeks after AFIMAC announced its corporate merger of AFI International and IMAC Global, a move intended to streamline its services across North America. This flurry of alliance and acquisition activity signals a major growth and expansion phase for the well-recognized and elite group of security companies.

Through the acquisition of Mena International, AFIMAC will now further extend its reach into Latin America in order to better serve those companies with multi-regional operations. Latin America is a very important market for AFIMAC’s global clients and, based on its superior reputation, Mena was selected as the best security partner that could bring access, security expertise and experience across the region.

“We are thrilled to make Mena, part of our AFIMAC family, says Peter Martin, president and CEO of AFIMAC Global. “Whether it is a kidnap for ransom, labor dispute, cargo security matter, or executive protection requirement, AFIMAC is now able to service the entire corridor through North and South America.”

“AFIMAC is a company that isn’t afraid to invest real dollars into markets that their clients regard as critical, says Ruben Mena, president of Mena International Group. “With its excellent reputation and far-sighted vision, we see it as a golden opportunity to join forces and are confident of future success under the same brand.”

About AFIMAC
Combining the strengths of AFI International and International Management Assistance Corporation (IMAC), AFIMAC Global is a leader in the provision of comprehensive corporate security and contingency planning services through North and South America and also offers global services. Its diverse capabilities include executive protection, labor dispute planning & response, cargo security & escorts, disaster & emergency response, corporate investigations, workplace violence assessment & response. With a distinguished management team and highly skilled personnel, AFIMAC Global is well known for its high quality service delivery and immediate responsiveness. www.afimacglobal.com

About Mena International Group
With services spanning from investigations, crisis management, executive protection and emergency response, Mena International Group is recognized as the premier trusted security service provider for companies across Latin America. www.menasecurity.com

For media inquiries, please contact Kathy Hungerford, AFIMAC, 1-800-554-4622

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The Occupy Movement’s Alliance with Labor Unions

August 7th, 2012 Comments off

Recently various labor unions have been aligning themselves with the Occupy movement. This begs the question – why? What advantage could a social movement bring to a labor union?  What would the Occupy movement stand to gain? The answers to these questions are quite logical if you look at the goals and objectives for both groups.

The Occupy movement is a social phenomenon that is based on the premise that 99% are working citizens that are up against the remaining 1% that are corporate wealthy. They are tired of the working American not having a fair way to compete for a comfortable living because they are exploited by the corporate wealthy who continuously get more wealthy from that exploitation. They feel corporate greed drives decisions that put the worker’s earning potential further and further behind. The wealth gap widens. The 99% feel that this effect is created both directly and indirectly. The direct approach is by corporate leaders limiting the earning potential of the workers through tight contracts and rigid pay policies. Indirectly, the deteriorating economy was created by corporate greed-driven malfeasance. The effects of that poor economy has a greater negative impact on the working family just trying to survive, than it does on the wealthy who just need to adjust their investment portfolio a bit.

Now look at the objectives of the labor unions. Capture the collective bargaining power of the workers to leverage better compensation for those workers through better contracts. The corporate leaders work to hold back ‘cost of goods sold’, especially in the labor cost area, in order to increase profits and their own profit sharing. Of course, they do this under the mantra of ‘shareholder value’ but with many of those same corporate leaders being major shareholders. Now granted, union strength is entirely in amassing higher member numbers for collective bargaining power. However, having more sympathetic social support from masses of people that will add to the collective spirit of the worker’s cause does not hurt them at all.

Whether picket lines, supported by the 99%, will help their position at the bargaining table during strikes remains to be seen. Certainly a louder voice and larger community support can be a valuable asset. As long as both sides are not civilly disobedient in their demonstration tactics, unions have nothing to lose and Occupy has nothing to lose.

For more on business contingency and crisis planning see our site at www.afimacglobal.com

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Two Elite Corporate Security Companies Merge as AFIMAC

August 1st, 2012 Comments off

AFI International Group Inc. (AFI) and International Management Assistance Corporation (IMAC) come together as one super firm to bring leading-edge security and crisis management services to clients across the globe

CLEVELAND, OH — August 1, 2012 — Five years after partnering to assist clients with their security operations, AFI, a leader in crisis management and response, and IMAC, with expertise in emergency response, risk management and business continuity services, have announced a merger into one company: AFIMAC. This new firm will deliver a stronger, more unified array of security services and will continue to provide the highest levels of customer service to its diverse client bases globally.

Through the merger, AFIMAC, becomes a single source solution for companies across the globe, no matter where they require top quality security and crisis services. Unifying the culture of the two companies has been an easy transition as employees in both firms have been interacting regularly on joint accounts.

By combining forces in this way, AFIMAC also brings together more than 55 years of industry-leading experience in emergency response, strike security, risk management, and business continuity services to protect its clients’ people and property, both during times of crisis and regular business operations.

“More and more clients have been turning to AFI and IMAC for a full range of services on both sides of the border,” says Peter Martin, AFIMAC president & CEO. “Merging the two companies streamlines how we can deliver this, with the highest quality levels and the greatest cost-effectiveness in the security industry.”

According to Martin, exceptional service will continue to be the hallmark of the new company:

“100 percent of our clients have been able to maintain their desired level of operation during a crisis … and 100 percent of client projects have been on budget, met projections, and delivered the promised services. The bottom line is clients come to us when they are facing significant risk and need operations executed flawlessly.”

With the security industry’s leading senior management team at the helm, AFIMAC promises to deliver unrivalled security and crisis expertise to its markets. The new firm offers an assortment of pre-crisis contingency planning and premium security and emergency response solutions to government and businesses in nearly every sector and industry with proven results.

“AFIMAC brings a refreshing cohesion in the corporate security sector,” says Stephen Anderson, AFIMAC vice president. “The new venture clearly shows that we have invested heavily in assembling a global group of services and experts, instead of informal partnerships, which is truly exceptional in our industry.”

About AFIMAC
Combining the strengths of AFI International and International Management Assistance Corporation (IMAC), AFIMAC is a leader in the provision of comprehensive corporate security and contingency planning services globally. Its diverse capabilities include labor dispute planning & response, cargo security & escorts, disaster & emergency response, corporate investigations, workplace violence assessment & response, and executive protection. With a distinguished management team and highly skilled personnel, AFIMAC is well known for its high quality service delivery and immediate responsiveness.

About AFI International Group Inc.
AFI International Group provides elite security, risk management, business continuity and investigative services to protect people and property both during labor disruption and regular business operations. AFI also offers an assortment of pre-crisis planning and premium security solutions to businesses representing nearly every industry.

About International Management Assistance Corporation
International Management Assistance Corporation (IMAC) offers elite security, risk management and business continuity services to image conscious companies across North America. IMAC has partnered with their clients to protect people and property both during times of crisis and regular business operations. The company also offers an assortment of pre-crisis planning and premium security solutions to businesses representing nearly every industry.

For media inquiries, please contact Kathy Hungerford, AFIMAC, 1-800-554-4622

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