Five Question Quiz to find Workplace Communication Problems Published by Sensitivity, Sexual Harassment and Diversity Training Firm

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Long time Sensitivity Trainer Dr. Deena Pargman publishes Five Question Quiz to help human resource professionals and managers determine whether they have a Workplace Office Communication Problem. After fifteen years of sensitivity training working with people involved in sexual harassment and other diversity related complaints, Dr. Deena Pargman expands the workplace service offerings of DB Pargman Consulting and explains why many harassment and diversity issues are communication issues at their core.

critical conversations, communications skills training, communication corporate, office communication

Communication Skills Training can increase productivity and prevent complaints

When systemic communication problems in an organization go unaddressed, they become ticking time-bombs that will inevitably blow up at a later date in the form of a harassment complaint or other tragedy.

Deena Pargman, Ph.D., founder and CEO of DB Pargman Consulting LLC, expands service offerings to include workplace communication skills training and consulting. To highlight the expanded service offerings, DB Pargman Consulting LLC published a five question “You Might Have an Office Communication Problem If . . . .” quiz.

After fifteen years of experience providing one-on-one and group diversity, sensitivity, and anti-harassment training, Dr. Pargman shares, “We are often initially called to respond to a sexual harassment or diversity related urgent situation, but once the crisis is addressed, the client wants to know what else can be done to prevent the next crisis.”

According to Dr. Pargman, the sexual harassment or diversity complaint that makes its way to human resources is often a symptom of some other communication or personality conflict. Dr. Pargman shares, “after we deal with the off-color joke or inappropriate comment, a separate underlying issue often rears its head and much of the time, it involves communication skills.”

As the nation’s leading provider of Harassment Prevention and Sensitivity Training for over fifteen years, Dr. Pargman has identified a pattern: most of the sexual harassment or diversity situations she sees do not involve a blatant sexual advance, groping, or racist epithet. Rather, the majority of the situations, according to Dr. Pargman, involve an attempt to level a playing field or address a power imbalance by an aggrieved, marginalized, or offended employee or co-worker. Dr. Pargman shares her experience that very often, the marginalization or offense is a function of poor communication or a lack of communication – and that, she says, can be fixed through skill building.

To assist human resource professionals, office managers, and business owners, Dr. Pargman offers the following five question quiz to help identify systemic office communication problems:

(1)    “There’s Never a Good Time or Place” Does it seem like there is never a good time or place to talk about certain issues important to the company? If everyone is so busy that there is never a good time or place to talk, then there is probably a systemic communication problem.

(2)    “That’s What They Always Say” Do people feel a supervisor or company message is “always the same old story”? If “the same old story” is replacing meaningful dialogue, then there is likely a systemic communication problem.

(3)    “I’ll Just Keep It To Myself” Have people come to the conclusion that it is best to just keep their mouth shut, do the job and not talk about it? If people are are not willing to talk about problems, then there is a systemic communication problem.

(4)    “No Truth to Power” Do people feel they cannot raise important issues with supervisors, management, or the powers that be? If the office has a culture where people do not feel comfortable raising issues up the hierarchy, there is a systemic communication problem.

(5)    “I’ll Get You” Do people walk around waiting for an opportunity to get back at someone or settle the score? If so, then there is definitely have a systemic communication problem in the office.

Dr. Pargman warns, “When systemic communication problems in an organization go unaddressed, they become ticking time-bombs that will blow up at a later date, often in the form of a harassment complaint or other incident.” Dr. Pargman points to tragedies outside of traditional HR issues: “When investigators study crashes, accidents, explosions and other workplace disasters, far too often it is revealed that someone in the organization had certain information that could have prevented a tragedy, but for some reason the information never made it to where it needed to go.”

"The good news," according to Pargman, is "systemic communication problems in an organization can be addressed with a small amount of training." Pargman points out that most organizations spend piles of money and energy on WHAT they do, setting goals, and trying to hit numbers, but few organizations give much thought as to HOW they will communicate as they do it. "A little bit of education can go a long way to helping people avoid communication disasters and improve performance and productivity at the same time."

To celebrate and highlight the expansion of services, DB Pargman launched a new website at    The website’s main page slider changes from a scene of a worker leaping across a chasm in intense orange colors, to a playful sandbox, and finally to a blue sky and balloons to represent the three areas of services the company provides: (1) responding to crisis, (2) helping people deal with conflict, and (3) helping people and organizations optimize performance.

DB Pargman Consulting LLC is the nation’s leading provider of One-on-One Executive and Group Sensitivity and Harassment Prevention Training. When a sexual harassment, diversity, communication or other complaint occurs involving a valuable employee or executive, DB Pargman provides prompt and remedial responses for companies facing harassment and diversity sensitivity complaints. To help prevent harassment before it occurs, DB Pargman provides best in class preventative Group Anti-Harassment Training Programs and Communication Skills Training Programs. Headquartered in Atlanta, DB Pargman Consulting LLC serves a national client base of medium to large size companies, educational institutions, and government agencies.

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