Top 5 Tips to Deal with Workplace Bullying

September 17, 20158:40 am5274 views
Top 5 Tips to Deal with Workplace Bullying
Workplace Bullying (CNW Group/OfficeTeam)

Workplace bullying is more common than many managers may realise. Bullying at workplaces can have serious impact on the individual’s performance and affect company’s growth. Workplace bullying happens when a group of people at work single out one individual and start embarrassing, harassing or intimidating the person without reasoning.

According to the Workplace Bullying Institute, up to a third of workers may be the victims of abuse by workplace bullies. About twenty percent of workplace bullying crosses the line into harassment.

“The New York Times found that about sixty percent of workplace bullies are men, and they tend to bully male and female employees equally. Female bullies, however, are more likely to bully other females. This may be because there is more pressure on females trying to succeed in male-dominated workplaces, and more competition between females for promotions,” Bullying Statistics reports.

“Workplace bullying often flies under the radar because employees tolerate or fail to report it,” said Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. “Managers and staff alike should be supported in addressing bullying issues. This includes not giving anyone a pass for negative behaviour, no matter how valued that person may be.”

According to recent research from staffing firm OfficeTeam, more than two in five (43 per cent) of workers surveyed admitted they’ve had an office bully, yet the majority (63 per cent) of human resources (HR) managers interviewed said they think workplace bullying never happens at their company. Another quarter (25 per cent) think it rarely occurs.

See: Are Asians more Accepting of Workplace Bullying?

When employees were asked how they responded to a bully, 27 per cent stated they told their manager. Another 25 per cent confronted the bully, and 18 per cent did nothing.

Here are five top tips for employees to deal with workplace bullying:

  1. Take a stand. Avoid being an easy target. Bullies often back off if you show confidence and stick up for yourself.
  2. Talk it out. Have a one-on-one discussion with the bully, providing examples of behaviours that made you feel uncomfortable. It’s possible the person is unaware of how his or her actions are negatively affecting others.
  3. Keep your cool. As tempting as it is to go tit-for-tat, don’t stoop to the bully’s level. Stay calm and professional.
  4. Document poor conduct. Maintain a record of instances of workplace bullying, detailing what was said or done by the individual.
  5. Seek support. If the issue is serious or you aren’t able to resolve it on your own, alert your manager or HR department for assistance.

Also country’s culture of work is a key influence in the degree of workplace bullying. The Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) plans to push global standards to highlight the need to understand cultural differences in the acceptance of workplace bullying.

The culture of the country in which a company operates can have its substantial effect on how managers treat the workforce. The problem lies in what may be seen as bullying in one country culture, may not be viewed in the same light elsewhere.

Also read: Sexism at Workplace Ramifies Itself

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