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CEO Arlene Limas on providing groundbreaking workplace violence prevention programs

CEO Arlene Limas

Rather than talking about violence in the work environment after it occurs, let’s talk about preventing violence in the first place. Who better to discuss that than the CEO of PAVE Prevention, a company that focuses on training employees around violence prevention in the workplace? Empowering employees to help prevent a violent event is huge! Find out more about the powerful work that PAVE Prevention is doing in this interview with its CEO and co-founder, Arlene Limas.

Disclosure: This sponsored post focuses on how the team at PAVE Prevention provides groundbreaking programs to companies for violence prevention training in the workplace.

Interview with Arlene Limas

In this interview with an exceptional leader, look forward to learning more about how PAVE Prevention customizes training around violence prevention to a specific company, creating a safer workplace for all. Thank you for taking the time for this interview, Arlene.

What inspired you and your co-founders to create PAVE Prevention?

I think we are motivated by the positive impact that empowerment self-defense has on anyone who takes the training. It is life-changing for them.

We know that people do most of their adult learning at work and [are] framing it in a way that we can impact people’s bottom line so that they can be more financially successful in the businesses they run. We thought we would Trojan horse our way in and impart the training to the individual while making the business more successful and profitable.

Can you please expand on what PAVE Prevention strives to achieve?

In the simplest terms, we are trying to make the world a safer place. We are doing that by empowering the individual with human safety skills. That is our goal.

We also hope to find out as much information as possible through our PAVE surveys and assessments. We want to show the worth and value of what we are doing.

What does a safer workplace mean, in your opinion?

To me, a safer workplace looks like a place where people can be their complete and whole selves. They can move through their day feeling safe, and because of the first two reasons given, they can then be highly productive.

Well said! What are some reasons women might feel unsafe at work?

There are a lot of situations that can make a woman feel unsafe at work. It can be that they cannot come as their whole self. It can be situations outside of work that they worry might come into the workplace. It can be relationships that they have with coworkers where there is bullying and harassment. This can be verbal or physical.

There can be a lack of psychological safety. It can be their own activating issues that bring up past traumas. There are so many.

Workplace safety quote
Arlene Limas on achieving a safer workplace.

Interview with Arlene Limas cont’d.

Ensuring women’s safety in the workplace involves what, exactly?

What would you get when a woman is allowed to come to work, present their whole self and feel like they can move through the day safely? We don’t even have an idea of what that potential looks like. We don’t even really know what that person looks like.

The sky is the limit. That’s what I believe.

When we can move in our environment feeling 100% safe. If something does happen, you need it to be acknowledged and feel that you are believed.

Who knows what the potential of that individual is if they are supported? We also must think about the generational impact.

Earlier, we briefly talked about empowerment. How can PAVE’s unique programming empower employees?

I would say PAVE Prevention is the furthest from check-the-box training. Unfortunately, we’ve gotten to a point in training around violence prevention that we stumble through it almost half asleep and half engaged. The way PAVE approaches their training is deeply based in adrenalized scenarios and trauma-informed training. It just embeds itself in the brain and in our DNA differently.

So, we take it in differently, not only remembering it, but being able to apply it under pressure. That is where we have the biggest impact.

It’s not something you can walk through. It’s not something that you can learn sitting in front of a computer while listening to a webinar.

I think our proprietary PAVE assessments are groundbreaking. I think the ability to really gather deep and meaningful information about the workplace culture really changes the game. It helps us to customize the training and gives us incredible insight into a company.

PAVE Prevention isn’t just what’s happening right now. We are fresh; we are new. We are looking at things in a different and innovative way.

Are your programs reactive, proactive, or both?

I believe that PAVE is uniquely positioned to help an employee stop violent events from happening. When I say a violent event, I am describing the full spectrum, from microaggressions to a full-blown physical assault. It’s a skill set that deescalates something from happening and being able to protect yourself at the same time. It’s the ability to stop something in real-time.

The ability to use your voice, being able to say no. To have that confidence and to be able to heal from a traumatic event. I think PAVE covers that spectrum on both ends. I believe most training courses do not.

PAVE Prevention is a training partner for the MACRO program. What does that involve, and what are the potential benefits for the community?

We were honored to be selected and are honored to continue to be a part of the MACRO program in Oakland. As you may know, MACRO is a community responder program that came out of the task force reimagining public safety.

It responds to nonviolent, non-emergency 911 calls. It is housed under the fire department. There is a very clear distinction that it is not the police department. They have been in the field now for over a year.

We are very proud of the training that we instilled in them and are even happier that they are returning home safe every day. Every individual that took the MACRO training is using those skill sets not only at work, but in their everyday lives. We have confirmed that with post-training surveys that tell us that they find themselves using the skill sets of boundary setting, using their voice, de-escalation, and checking in with themselves and checking out (grounding) with their field partners.

They are using those skills every day and in their everyday lives as well. The ripple effect is huge.

They are helping Oaklands most vulnerable citizens, and they are coming home safe. They are using these PAVE skill sets every day.

Arlene Limas
CEO Arlene Limas is a martial artist too. Photo by Michael Scott, Power of XYZ.

Empowering others isn’t new to you! Please share how you made history in the Seoul Olympics of 1988 and your martial arts background.

I’ve been a lifelong martial artist all my life. I don’t remember much of my life without it. I consider myself a student today.

I have studied martial arts for 53 years. I began assisting in classes and teaching other people at the very young age of 14 years old.

I’ve been very fortunate to be able to impact people’s lives by empowering them with Martial Arts. When my hat changed from a martial arts instructor to a taekwondo coach, it was a combination of empowering athletes with martial arts and sport. I’ve been very fortunate to have those opportunities.

In 1988, Taekwondo was in the Olympic Games held in Seoul, Korea. Korea had the honor of introducing Taekwondo to the Olympic family, a new sport, after many years of doing its due diligence by making sure that enough people around the world were practicing and competing in Taekwondo.

There were many countries that were going to have an opportunity to be successful in the sport.  The Korean Organizing Committee, the sole Organizing Committee, brought in Taekwondo. Taekwondo would make its debut as a demonstration sport at the games.

What that meant was you participated in the Olympic Games just as any other sport. You were outfitted in Olympic gear, you lived in the Olympic Village, your competition was still the highest level. It wasn’t a demo. The only downside is that your medals didn’t count towards your country’s points.

It was incredibly important that United States do well in taekwondo during that Olympic Games. If the US team doesn’t capture medals there, Taekwondo would not become an official sport further down the line.

I became the first American and first female to win an Olympic gold medal at the 1988 Olympic Games. It was an incredible experience.

Final words from CEO Arlene Limas: Connect further with the team

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to answer these questions and to share the exciting stuff that PAVE Prevention is doing right now. If there is anything we could ever do to help, please reach out to us and let’s change the world.

Stay up to date with PAVE Prevention on social media. Follow the company on LinkedIn. Also find them on Instagram, and get exclusive content on YouTube.


Top photo: Meet PAVE Prevention CEO Arlene Limas. Photo courtesy of Michael Scott, Power of XYZ.

5 thoughts on “CEO Arlene Limas on providing groundbreaking workplace violence prevention programs”

  1. Thanks for shining a light on this important topic with Arlene Lamas, Christy. So inspiring, and necessary. They idea is to prevent and avert. <3

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