MarketWatch examines prevailing myths about workplace violence.

Two prevailing myths about workplace violence are “We know everybody; it can’t happen here.”

The was an outbreak last fall:

Data: U.S. workplaces saw 458 homicides in 2017 and 500 in 2016, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and 351 of those 2017 homicides involved shooting. There’s been little change in the number of workplaces homicides over the last decade: There were 468 in 2011. About one in four American workers is aware that any workplace-violence incident ever occurred where they work, according to a recent survey published by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM).


Recommended responses: • Have more than a zero-tolerance policy. • Create a relaxed, open and transparent work culture. • Don’t respond to reports in a punitive nature. • Establish mental-health support and policies, and be open about them. • Show compassion rather than fear or recrimination. • Make people comfortable with reporting concerns. • Assemble a threat-management team • Be aware of domestic-violence issues. • Take a climate survey