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Sexual harassment prevention starts with changing the culture in a workplace.

For Lynn Heckler, the most effective way to prevent workplace sexual harassment is not about policy and training, it’s about changing the organization’s culture. After all, as she pointed out, if policies and training were working, anti-sexual harassment social movements such as #MeToo and Time’s Up would not exist.

Heckler, EVP and chief talent officer for PSCU in St. Petersburg, Fla., has become one of the industry’s outspoken proponents of the need for cultural transformation within credit unions –and all organizations – to prevent workplace harassment. She’s already given several presentations about it at credit union conferences, including the World Council of Credit Unions conference in Singapore earlier this summer. What’s more, Heckler and Susan Mitchell, CEO of Mitchell, Stankovic and Associates, a credit union consulting firm in Boulder City, Nev., were extensively quoted in a white paper produced by CUNA’s HR & Organizational Development Council, which takes a deeper look at the overall impact of the #MeToo movement and how credit unions can respond and make changes to address workplace sexual harassment issues. “We’ve had policies and procedures for reporting and dealing with sexual harassment complaints when I got started in the industry in the 80s, but it’s really not about policies and processes,” Heckler explained. “It’s about what you tolerate in your culture, and it’s about the norms that you put in place for senior leadership behavior. That’s really at the heart of this.”

Mitchell said it’s time for credit unions to be preemptive in their approaches, and not wait for a problem or lawsuit.

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Peter Strozniak

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