Supervisor Training

An effective supervisor training program is crucial because a bad supervisor or even a bad decision by an otherwise good supervisor has haunted countless employers, whether it comes in the form of lower employee productivity or employee lawsuits.

An area in which supervisors are vital in preventing employee lawsuits is sexual harassment.  In fiscal year 2008, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received more than 32,000 complaints alleging sexual harassment.  The complaints resulted in $74.8 million in settlements alone.

While sexual harassment training isn’t required by federal law, it is recommended that employers do provide this type of training. Note: Some states do require sexual harassment training for supervisors. For example, California requires training at least every two years for supervisory employees. Connecticut requires training and education of two or more hours for supervisory employees. Maine requires training and education for new employees and additional training for new supervisors.

One of the reasons sexual harassment training is important is that an employer is liable for the harassing conduct of an employee’s co-worker if the employer knew or should have known of the harassment and failed to take immediate and appropriate action to end the harassment. An employer may be viewed as having known of harassing conduct if a supervisor or any other person acting as the employer’s agent is aware of the harassment.

Indeed, knowing how to handle and promptly report harassment complaints through an established procedure is key to providing prompt remedial action; and to protecting against discrimination claims.

Another goal for the training is to prevent harassment by the supervisors themselves. The Supreme Court has ruled that an employer will always be held liable for sexual harassment by a supervisor if it culminates in a tangible employment action (e.g., firing, failure to promote).

Supervisors should be trained on other important laws as well, such as the Family and Medical Leave Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act.  Effective training will provide supervisors with the information and tools they need to respond to situations lawfully and consistently.

In addition to training on various laws, supervisors should receive training on managing employees, including how to:

  • Conduct performance reviews
  • Discipline employees
  • Handle challenging employees
  • Conduct effective meetings
  • Motivate employees

BLR’s TrainingToday offers supervisor training on all of those subjects and more.  Courses cover:

  • ADA Training for Supervisors
  • Disaster Planning Training for Supervisors
  • Employment Law Training for Supervisors
  • Leadership Skills Training for Supervisors
  • Workplace Ethics Training for Supervisors

Related Training Courses

Stop Sexual Harassment: VIDEO Training for California Supervisors

The state of California has mandated harassment prevention training for supervisors. But what’s the smart way to train your organization’s supervisors without a huge investment of time, money, and preparation? The answer is Stop Sexual Harassment: Video Training for Supervisors. This course meets supervisor training requirements under AB1825.

Office Hazards—What Supervisors Need to Know

The main objective of this session is to review office hazards and the safety precautions you need to take to help your workers prevent accidents and injuries. By the time this session is over, you should be able to recognize office hazards, know what to do in emergencies, take proper precautions to avoid accidents, reduce ergonomic risk factors, use proper lifting techniques, and Manage stress effectively.

Top-Down Communication for Supervisors

The main objective of this session is to help you communicate more effectively when you are giving direction and inspiring subordinates to deliver top performance. By the time this session is over, you will be able to understand the role top-down communication plays in effective supervision; identify strategies for improving top-down communication; and communicate successfully with employees in all work situations.

Conducting Effective Meetings: A Guide for Supervisors

The main objective of this session is to help you use meetings effectively to accomplish important goals. By the time this session is over, you will be able to plan meetings that achieve the best results; conduct meetings efficiently; and participate more effectively in other people’s meetings.

Planning and Organizing Skills for Supervisors

During this training session, you’ll learn about how you can become better organized so that you can become more efficient and stop wasting valuable time. You’ll also learn how to develop better plans so that you can achieve goals and be more successful.

Related Training Libraries

HR Video Training for Supervisors

The HR Video Training for Supervisors library includes courses to train new employees, existing employees, and experienced managers and helps ensure compliance with all Department of Labor (DOL) rules and regulations. From hiring to discrimination to privacy, we have you covered.

Stop Sexual Harassment: VIDEO Training for California Supervisors

Stop Sexual Harassment: VIDEO Training for California Supervisors: This complete training program gives you everything you need to conduct training that’s authoritative, attention-grabbing, and best of all, helps you protect your organization against devastating lawsuits. Unlike other training programs, this course is: Simple. For you and your staff. In just two hours, your team learns. . .


The HR-Employment Library includes HR training courses to train new employees, existing employees and experienced managers and helps ensure compliance with all Department of Labor (DOL) rules and regulations. From orientation, to FMLA, to team building we have you covered.   Click any course title below to view a full description and preview the training. . .

Workplace Safety

Do you fully understand what your responsibilities are when it comes to compliance with OSHA and other federal and state safety rules and regulations? For many organizations, getting the information and tools you need to stay on track and in compliance is time-consuming and expensive.   The Workplace Safety training library includes everything you need. . .