(From the November 9th Real Talk radio show)
This week we have been inundated with reports of bullying in all forms: social media and cyber space bullying, mothers bullying children and other parents, teachers bullying students and the most explosive claim of locker room bullying by a Miami Dolphins player.
And just like bullying takes place on the playground as well as cyber space and locker rooms, it can also happen in the workplace.
I’d like for all of my career and business gladiators to listen up to these workplace bullying facts just in case you are exhibiting these behaviors or have a friend or family member who may be on the receiving end of a Mean Girl or Mean Boy at work!!!!
Workplace Bullying is defined as repeated, health-harming mistreatment that shows up as– work interference, threats, humiliating or intimidating behavior and/or verbal abuse. Name calling, physical contact or other issues sometimes masked as horse playing.
- Is driven by perpetrators’ (the mean girl or mean boy’s) need to control the targeted individual(s).
- Is initiated by bullies who choose their targets, timing, location, and methods.
- Undermines legitimate business interests when bullies’ personal agendas take precedence over work itself.
- Is akin to domestic violence at work, where the abuser is on the payroll.
And unlike schoolyard bullying, you were not targeted because you were a “loner” or a weakling.
Most bullied in the workplace are highly liked by management, every ethical and honest and refuses to take short cuts, very productive and is usually viewed as a threat.
Unfortunately, bullying in the workplace goes unreported because of shame and embarrassment. 40% or more never tell their employer of the situation. One of the biggest fears is retaliation or escalated treatment.
Those bullied at work exhibit a number of issues including high blood pressure and other health related problems, anxiety about showing up for work, using paid time off or excessive absenteeism to avoid the bully.
Let’s be real – Size or Gender does not matter. Anyone can be bullied in any environment. At work, you have a right to a harassment free environment. If it is happening to you – document it and report it. If proper action is not taken by management – you could have a possible worker’s comp or even a claim for hostile environment.
Reference: The Workplace Bullying Institute