Assignment 3: RA Working Ahead
You work for a large corporate business. One of the managers at the company receives an anonymous e-mail message claiming that a certain employee, Bob, has been acting strangely and muttering threats to get even with others. The manager calls the police, who, after obtaining Bob’s permission, search his car and workstation but find no evidence of any weapons. Bob denies ever making any sort of threat and says he was just having a bad day.
The manager asks you to conduct a threat assessment on Bob. The manager says that the company has the right to conduct a threat assessment, but Bob is liable to sue if he is fired as a consequence of your findings, so the threat assessment has to stand up to scrutiny in court. In addition, Bob must be determined by you to have “fully cooperated” with the assessment in order to avoid termination. Therefore, you can expect him to participate in any form of assessment you choose even though he may lie or misrepresent his answers. If you state Bob lied during the assessment, he will be fired. This, too, must stand up to scrutiny in court.
You review Bob’s personnel record. He has been late to work several times and has even come to work drunk. He missed one week of work three years ago while jailed on a drunk and disorderly charge. He took personal leave to cover the missed time, and the arrest was discovered only by a report in the newspaper.
At the time of his arrest, he had a gun in his possession, for which he had a permit and which he could carry as a concealed weapon. Bob has been divorced twice and has no children. He currently lives alone. He has completed the eleventh grade but not his General Educational Development (GED). School records reveal he was often truant and was suspended three times for fighting. He served two years in the military and was honorably discharged after being found to have a “severe personality disorder that made him unsuitable for duty.”
Part 1: Planning
On the basis of the case scenario, create a 3- to 5-page plan in a Microsoft Word document addressing the following questions:
What is the purpose of the specialized interview?
How will you plan the assessment?
Whom will you interview and why?
What will you tell Bob about the nature and purpose of the evaluation and its potential consequences? Why?
What are the advantages and disadvantages of a telephone interview?
In addition, answer the following:
What assessment instruments will you administer to Bob? Why?
How will you evaluate the truthfulness of his responses?
What methods will you use to deal with Bob’s defensive posture in interviews?
Part 2: Client Statement
In Part 1, you created a broad plan of action to investigate the threat Bob poses to the company. To conduct the risk assessment for Bob, in this part of the assignment, you will explore the existing risk assessment questionnaires you can administer to him.
Create a 1- to 2-page reference paper (below the plan you created in Part 1) addressing the following:
Identify a single risk assessment questionnaire or instrument used by psychologists. Find four references—web-based references or published scientific reports—on the instrument or on the process of risk assessment.
Your list of references should include at least two articles for and two articles against the risk assessment questionnaire or instrument in general (write a 1-paragraph summary of each reference you provide).
Described the purpose of the interview and prepared a well-articulated plan to conduct the assessment.
Identified the assessment instruments and methods you would use with Bob and justified their use.
Identified the methods you would use to evaluate the truthfulness of Bob’s responses.
Provided the information you would disclose to Bob before conducting the investigation and justified it.
Stated the advantages and disadvantages of a telephone interview.
Submitted a well-structured report providing an appropriate rationale for your choices.
Identified a risk assessment questionnaire used by psychologists that you can use for your investigation.
Listed at least two articles for and two articles against the risk assessment questionnaire or risk assessment in general.
Any investor should pay attention to all threats that are likely to affect the course of doing business for their organizations and companies. Despite the fact that there is a possibility of insuring their business entities against threats, the human threat remains one of the hardest threats to predict and insure against. As a result, it is important for employees to adopt comprehensive workplace violence- prevention policies that establish processes to make sure employees safety and wellbeing is not compromised. Comprehensive workplace safety policies put more emphasis on how to prevent violence, management of a violent event, support violence victims and controls of weapons in the workplace. In case there is violence in the workplace, there is the need for the management of the organization to conduct a risk assessment which acts as a prevention strategy. Often risk assessment focuses on identifying employee threats to participate in violent activities, determining the seriousness of the threat and finally developing an intervention plan to protect employees from the violent individual (O’Toole, 2009)m. This assignment will focus on ways and techniques an organization can use to conduct and effective and appropriate threat assessment plan.
Part 1: Planning
To determine whether Bob is guilty of threat accusations from other workers, there is the need to conduct an interview to reveal the truth if the matter. An interview is a formal consultant that is often conducted by an interviewer to an interviewee to obtain a piece of information or an opinion from an individual. However, a specialized interview is more than a formal interview considering that the interviewer, in this case, I will be looking and hunting for specific information from the members of the workforce (Deisinger, 2008). In the case of violent employees, psychological interviews widely reffer4ed to as forensic psychology is very important in various ways such as identifying the reasons behind violent acts of the employees as well as personality disorders among the members of the labor force. As a result, the specialized interview can be defined as the interaction, psychology and the law of the country or rather the rules and regulations that govern an organization for that matter.
To obtain reliable information and data that will stand court scrutiny as well as data that will be used by the management of the organization to make the final decision regarding Bob, I need to interview Bob, his two ex-wives, some of his colleagues especially those who were threatened and finally his immediate supervisor. To get unbiased information, each interviewee will be interviewed separately from their counterparts and their stories recorded differently for comparison purposes. Moreover, each interviewee will not be threatened or coerced, but rather will be allowed to speak freely and contribute to the final findings of this assessment. The participants mentioned earlier are crucial in this assessment considering that they have been directly involved or worked with Bob on one occasion or another. Through identification of the relationship between Bob and his colleagues whom he threatened as well as finding the root cause of his threats will enable us to understand his behavior and motives behind the threats. Moreover, interviewing his two ex-wives will eventually reveal the reasons behind their break ups as well as provide a behavior pattern that can be utilized to elaborate the certain change in behavior in the workplace (Meloy, 2015). Finally, his immediate supervisor is the only person who can help this assessment by providing information regarding any recent changes in behavior pattern of his staff. Past and present behavioral patterns will be crucial when making my findings and recommendations.
Bob deserves to know the truth about the nature and purpose of the threat assessment. Considering that full cooperation from Bob counts a lot in the final re3commedation of the assessment, there is a great need for him to understand that his career is the line. The first step will be to inform Bob of the purpose of the assessment which to identify and evaluate the real reasons behind his threats to other employees. Secondly, Bob needs to know the importance of the assessment. The importance of this assessment is to determine if he is a threat to himself as well as to other members of the workforce. Finally Bob needs to understand that the assessment will determine his suitability to occupy his position in the organization as well as determine if he is reliable and fit enough to work in the company (Meloy, The concept of identification in threat assessment. , 2015). By informing him of the nature and purpose of the assessment, Bob has a decision to make before the completion of the assessment. He has to determine if he wants to remain part of the workforce or whether he wants his career to come to an end. His full cooperation would be appreciated and needed to make the final decision.
Interviews can take different forms depending on the nature of the information the interviewer wants to get as well as the distance between the interviewer and the interviewee and telephone interview is just one of them. Often, telephone interviews are conducted when the distance between the interviewer and the interview is too large to be closed within the stipulated time. A telephone interview is an effective way for an interviewer to screen the interviewee quickly and with the lowest overall expenditure regarding money and time. Below are some of the advantages and disadvantages of the telephone interview.
- Cheap and cheerful – a phone call is way far much easier and less costly than other forms of interview, especially face to face interview mostly where distance and time are factors. As a result, the interviewer stands a high chance of conducting many types of research in a short period as opposed to another form of interviews such as mail interview.
- There is a wide geographical access when conducting a telephone interview – an interviewer has a wide geographical access with telephone interviews considering that he can conduct the interview from different parts of the globe provided there is network coverage. Nearly, every individual in the universe, especially in the United States, has a land-line telephone or a cell phone, making it easy to get hold of an individual and conduct the interview there and then(Szolnoki, 2013).
- Fast data collection – the speed at which data and information are collected through telephone interview is obviously faster compared to face to face interview. The interviewer has a great opportunity of ringing one interviewee and straight to the next one which saves time and enables the interviewer to put the obtained information into the computer directly.
- Effort effective – a phone interview takes far much less energy and efforts as opposed to other forms of interviews.
- Less control – the interviewer has less control over the interview given the fact that the interview is conducted over the telephone. Moreover, given the fact that they cannot face the interviews, it is hard to tell when the interviewee is telling the truth or when they are lying.
- Loss of personal appeal – personal appeal, body reactions, and expressions are very crucial when conducting any form interview considering that they can tell more about what the interviewees feel about the topic at hand. At times it is hard to convince the interviewer on the phone but becomes very easy to convince him or her during face to face interview.
- Prohibited use of images and visual aids in a question – both the interviewer and the interviewee are not in a position to use visual aids and images to support their answers and feelings towards a particular subject. As a result, phone interview restricts the types of questions asked which could have otherwise been conducted during a face to face interview(Irvine, 2013).
An interviewer may use different assessment tools to obtain his information based on the nature of the information as well as the relationship between the interviewer and the interviewee. In this case, face to face interview and questionnaire to Bob would work miracles. Face to face interview will eventually give me a chance to witness first hand Bob’s emotions and body expressions and reactions to my question. On the other hand, questionnaires will give Bob enough time to think and ponder over the answers which increase chances of getting the truth out of him. To evaluate the truthfulness of his responses, I would compare his responses, and he answers given by other interviewees on the same subject. Besides, I would constantly remind him of the purpose and importance of the assessment to try to deal with his defensive posture in the interview.
Part 2: Client statement
A good questionnaire should at least contain open and closed ended questions to give the interviewee an option and platform to express themselves and their answers. Below are some possible questions that I can include in Bob’s questionnaire.
- Why have you threatened or made comments which have been perceived by your colleagues as threatening? What is happening in your life that is prompting you to do this?
- Are you aware of what has been said to your friends, coworkers and family members regarding what is troubling you?
- How do you view yourself in relation to everyone else?
- Do you perceive the words you uttered as threatening?
- Do you feel like you have been wronged in any way?
- Do you accept responsibility for your actions?
- How do you cope with disappointments, loss, and failure?
- Do you blame others for your failures?
- Are you experiencing personal issues such as split up, separation, and mortification in the family, health challenges or other personal challenges?
- Are you occupied with violent themes? That is being interested in violent events or do you get excited by weapons?
- Have you received uncomplimentary performance reviews or have you been criticized by the management or the supervisor in the recent past?
- Are you experiencing financial problems, high personal debt or bankruptcy?
- Do you have a plan for what to do? If yes, what is the plan?
- Do you think you deserve and fit enough to continue working in this organization?
- Do you have justifications for your actions? If yes, what are they
Deisinger, G. R. (2008). The handbook for campus threat assessment & management teams. Stoneham, MA: . Applied Risk Management.
Irvine, A. D. (2013). ‘Am I not answering your questions properly?’Clarification, adequacy and responsiveness in semi-structured telephone and face-to-face interviews. . Qualitative Research, 13(1),, 87-106.
Meloy, J. R. (2015). The concept of identification in threat assessment. . Behavioral sciences & the law, 33(2-3),, 213-237.
Meloy, J. R. (2015). The concept of identification in threat assessment. . Behavioral sciences & the law, 33(2-3), , 213-237.
O’Toole, M. E. (2009). The school shooter a threat assessment perspective. . DIANE Publishing.
Szolnoki, G. &. (2013). Online, face-to-face and telephone surveys—Comparing different sampling methods in wine consumer research. . Wine Economics and Policy, 2(2), , 57-66.