People often dismiss “words” because they’re so cheap and plentiful. They say things without a second thought and keep moving. Unfortunately, words have incredible blunt-force power that leaves damage that lasts long after the words die. Because modern day business is such a pressure cooker, it can often drive people, especially leadership, to say and do things to employees they will later regret.

While this clip from “Swimming with Sharks” is (hopefully) over the top, it can provide a vivid reminder of the need to always keep a civil tongue and never resort to verbal abuse.


What is the worst verbal abuse you’ve ever heard in an office?

What reasons do people give to excuse this kind of abuse?

Where is the line between legitimate criticism and verbal abuse?

What prevents people from standing up for themselves or others when this happens?

Where can you go within our company to report verbal abuse?




Bryan Belknap, an award-winning screenwriter, is Creative Director at Resonate Pictures, which specializes in story-based training and branding films. He will be speaking at SCCE Compliance & Ethics Conference in Las Vegas.


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