Keenan Blog

The goal of the Keenan Blog is to provide a forum where we can come together to discuss issues and cultivate the solutions that will have a meaningful impact on your organization.

Workplace Violence: A Concern for All

Kathy Espinoza 11/19/2013
Kathy Espinoza

Over 120 people recently attended a Keenan webinar presented by Dr. Scott Poland on “The Minds of School Shooters: Implications for Prevention.” If you didn’t get to the live webinar or would like to view it again, the recorded webinar is available and highlights the following information:


  • Webinar ShootersPrior concerning behaviors of the shooters and their mental health
  • Prior knowledge that some peers had of the attacks
  • A look at thought processes and motivations of school shooters
  • Identifying the warning signs that were missed by parents, school and community personnel in previous school shootings
  • Understanding the types of shooters and learning strategies to prevent future shootings

Shooters and workplace violence are not just ‘school’ focused. The recent incidents at the Washington Navy Yard and Los Angeles International Airport illustrate this. Disgruntled employees and former employees may exhibit warning signs that are too frequently ignored. Certain workplaces have significantly greater risks than others. Therefore, every employer should perform an initial assessment to identify workplace security issues.

There are a number of factors that have been shown to contribute to the risk of violence in the workplace. If you have one or more of the following factors at your workplace, then you should consider your workplace to be at increased risk for violence:

  • Exchange of money
  • Working alone at night and during early morning hours
  • Availability of valued items, e.g., money and jewelry
  • Performing public safety functions in the community
  • Working with patients, clients, customers or students known or suspected to have a history of violence
  • Workers with a history of assaults or who exhibit belligerent, intimidating and threatening behavior to others.

Keenan is currently developing a new course available called, “WORKPLACE VIOLENCE: AWARENESS AND PREVENTION” through our Keenan SafeSchools, Keenan SafeColleges and Keenan SafePersonnel online training platforms. This course will focus on familiarizing all employees with their employer’s violence prevention program and related policies. It is everyone’s responsibility to recognize and report suspicious behavior by employees and visitors, and to learn how to handle a situation if it does become violent. Specific content for this course will include:

  • Levels and causes of workplace violence
  • Early warning signs of violence
  • Defusing escalating situations

Keenan is committed to helping our clients to make their workplaces safer.