Techniques For Dealing With Workplace Bullies
What is workplace bullying?
There are many forms of workplace bullying. These include harassment, discrimination and belittling. However, subtler actions can be detrimental to employees’ mental health. These include being excluded from work meetings or social activities, being subject to jokes and constant teasing, or receiving excessive performance monitoring in comparison to your peers.
These actions would not be considered bullying if the criticism and monitoring are constructive, helpful, and professional. But, bullying behavior that is persistent, targeted, intimidating, or repetitive would be a concern. If these actions are repeated and directed at the same person, it is important to address the issue and, if necessary, take the appropriate action.
Different types of workplace bullies
The Blatant Bully
These bullies will make unkind comments about others or talk down to them in meetings. They want to have their way. They want you to feel in control. They want you to understand how important they are and that it doesn’t matter which person they have to speak for them.
Passive Aggressive Bullies
The person will smile and offer an unintentional compliment such as “Wow, you are on time for once.” It’s wonderful! Passive-aggressive bullying leaves you wondering if they were giving you praise or taking you down a peg. Or, they might tell you something and then tell you something completely different.
These workers aren’t bullies in the sense that they don’t intend to cause trouble. Some people just function in a very simple way. These people might be perceived as bullies. They might not be aware of how others perceive them.
People who are direct can be aggressive, quick and unfiltered. This can eventually become bullying. Sometimes they can get away with their behavior because it’s “just how they are.” However, they need to be aware that the way they speak can be disruptive and harsh to team morale.
How to deal with a bully
If you’re willing to show courage and personal resolve, you can manage a bully. You must take action. Bullies will not leave you alone. If you make yourself a convenient target for the bully, it will only encourage them. You are encouraging the bully to keep doing the same thing if you accept the bully’s behaviour.
Five Steps to Handle Bullies
1. Keep your private records secret
It can be difficult to recall exactly when and why you were bullied. These details are crucial if you wish to report bullying. To help you recall the details and show that you have been treated poorly more than once, keep a personal log.
2. Read the Policy
You should check whether your workplace has a harassment or bullying policy. This policy might have been provided to you when you started. This will give you an idea about who you should talk to, the processes you should use, and the consequences for bullying.
3. Tell the bully to stop
Talk to the person who is bullying you and explain that it is offensive or unfair. You can ask another person to join you if you feel uncomfortable talking to the person.
It is a huge step to accuse your coworker of bullying behavior. Therefore, it’s understandable that you might feel anxious about sharing what has been going on. Remember that everyone at work is responsible for making sure they feel safe and happy.
4. It’s up to your HR manager.
Your notes can be used as a guide and you can clearly describe what’s going on and how it affects you. Most of the time HR will attempt to resolve things through mediation. The person bullying you could get a written warning, or even terminated.
Talking to your HR manager may not be an option. If this fails to stop bullying behavior, then it may be time to escalate the matter.
5. Bring the big guns
Submit an legal anti-bullying case and make it official.
The legal team will investigate any anti-bullying complaint you make. They will decide whether to hear, confer, or mediate the case depending on the information they have.
Bullying could be considered discriminatory if it is based on your personal characteristics such as sexual orientation, gender identity or age. Learn more about discrimination and what you can do to stop it.
- You can report to the police any threat, physical, or sexual assault.
- You can ask your union for help if you are a member. They might be able to offer you a lot of help in dealing with bullying at work, and may even be able opportunistically.
- You must immediately address the behavior
When someone is treated unfairly by their coworkers, it is called workplace bullying. This could include physical threats, teasing, or being excluded. Bullying is when someone else’s actions threaten your safety or health at work.
Many employees are reluctant to speak up about minor problems. They might be conflict avoidant or fear speaking out will backfire. Or they may not know how to deal with the situation right now. Sometimes it’s easier to keep quiet and hope that the behavior will resolve itself, especially if it comes from someone with power over your career.
Provide tools and plans to improve the performance of your employees. No matter the situation or who is involved, changing human behavior can be difficult. If employees are not given the right guidance and tools, it won’t help to tell them to change their behavior.
No matter what role an employee plays, it is important to make it clear that employees will be fired if they don’t conform to the employer’s standards. Learn more about our anti-bullying and harassment training sessions by calling our team.