Gun violence can happen virtually anywhere and at any time. You could be at a concert, at school, or, as Tuesday’s horrific shooting at YouTube’s headquarters in San Bruno, California reminded, at work. The latter incident, which left at least three people injured and the alleged shooter dead from a self-inflicted gun wound, is sadly, not an entirely unique occurrence. A 2018 report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics noted that there were 500 workplace homicides in 2016, with shootings accounting for 394 (79 percent) of them — up by 83 cases since 2015.
Workplaces of all kinds need to be ready to handle this worst-case scenario. But what exactly does such preparation look like? Upon consulting experts, we learned that dealing with this issue is a two-pronged effort: CEOs need to do their share insofar as implementing policies and procedures that encourage safety, communication and accountability; while employees need to be vigilant, report any concerns and know the resources they have available to them.