Media, Inc. founded in 1994 under the initial name of Voice of Montreal,
currently led by Shane Smith, originating from Montreal. Vice expanded
primarily into youth and young adult-focused digital media including online
content like web series, news, film production studio and a record label at
different locations around the world.
In the article, it is
reported that it found four legal settlements involving allegations of sexual
harassment or defamation against Vice employees from top management to bottom. Additionally,
it is also reported that more than twenty other women who are employees of Vice
had witnessed or experienced sexual misconduct at the work place.
Also, at Vice there is a
‘boy’s club’ culture which promoted unprofessional attitude or behavior that
spread throughout the company, with regarding this, the founders of Vice, Shane
Smith and Suroosh Avi has given a statement to the media, “We have failed as a
company to create a safe and inclusive workplace where everyone, especially
women, can feel respected and thrive”.
Impact on business brand
The male employees repeatedly
subjected female employees to sexual harassment in the form of explicit
propositions and deformed sexual remarks, which forced female employees to quit
their job. Due to these allegations and sexual harassment lawsuits, Vice
affected financially and also loosing its reputation.
The workplace environment
failed to properly address the issue to sexual harassment and developed the
signs of negative work culture, displeasure employees and high level
absenteeism is reflected in the company which can subsequently effects the
productivity of employees.
In 2016, Vice’s president,
Andrew Creighton, made a settlement of
$135,000 with a former employee who claimed that she was fired after she
rejected an intimate relationship with him. In 2017, Vice made a settlement of
$24,000 with a former journalist who said she had been the victim of racial,
sexual harassment, bullying and gender discrimination.
Initially, Vice’s management
did not act to address with the staff resulted in, co-workers neglecting to
report the ongoing incidences of sexual harassment they witnessed. The company
miserably failed to project the employees.
the boys club culture at Vice is one of the main reasons for harassment issues
when the employees are drunk and not in their senses, where partying often was
an extension of the job and can effect their appraisals and promotions at Vice
if they miss the party.
top to down Vice failed as company to create a safe workplace where everyone,
mainly women, should feel respected and prosper.
Good Practices to implement
Vice’s management could have
avoided these situations by implementing strict committee, policies,
procedures, programs and training as per the amendments by the government
Training. Vice should make sure that
all their employees, from president to the newly employed worker should know
what sexual harassment is and that is not at all tolerated by the law.
Training employees on regular
intervals are the best way to change the employees’ mindset and behavior.
Change in committee and policy. Vice should change their sexual harassment
committee by appointing the senior feminist and need to revise their policy to
strict the rules and regulations relating to sexual harassment, bullying and
Responding to complaints appropriately and timely. Vice should have a process in place by which employees can express
their concerns confidentially, without having to involve the alleged harasser
in the chain of reporting. Treat every
concern seriously and don’t brush off rumors without giving them the attention
In some cases, complaints can
be resolved with a staff meeting to go over the rules of workplace etiquette.
Other problems may require more formal investigation, assistance of outside
counsel, and discipline.
Avoiding and managing situations that
drives to harassment. One of the best ways to handle harassment complaints
in the workplace is to not have any because your employees know how to behave
in the workplace. Vice has to make sure all employees are given strict
guidelines on workplace ethics and should observe the things and behavioral
habits of the employees on the floor and have to react to them if anything looks
suspicious before they escalate.