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Workplace Bullies

Summary: Bullying in the workplace often extends back into the home. Feelings of low self-worth, anxiety, and stress can often translate to displaced anger with children, spouses, and partners.

Adult bullies, like their schoolyard counterparts, tend to be insecure people with poor or non-existent social skills and little empathy. They turn this insecurity outwards, finding satisfaction in attacking and diminishing the capable people around them.

A workplace bully subjects the person to unjustified criticism. He or she may humiliate the person, especially in front of others. When the bully is in a supervisory position, he or she may ignore, overrule, isolate, or exclude the employee.

Here are a few questions to consider if you suspect you are being bullied at work:

  • Do you feel set up for failure by imposed unrealistic goals or deadlines?
  • Are you denied necessary information and resources?
  • Do you feel you are overloaded with work?
  • Does your supervisor take vital work away, replacing it with demeaning tasks?

Here are a few solutions employees can explore:

  • Speak to your HR representative for guidance
  • Seek the advice of a trusted mentor
  • If possible, confront the bully in a professional manner, but only if your physical safety isn't threatened
  • Don't allow the bully to intimidate you or make you feel bad about yourself

Here are a few suggestions employees can explore with their employers:

  • Establish an employee hotline
  • Instate employee advocates
  • Conduct peer-to-peer reviews
  • Create confidential employee satisfaction surveys

Something to Think About...

  • 1 in 5 employees have experienced destructive bullying in the workplace
  • 80% of bullies are bosses. A bully is equally likely to be a man or a woman
  • Bullying (general harassment) is far more prevalent than sexual harassment and racial discrimination
  • 53% of employees lost work time worrying about the incident or future interactions
  • 28% of employees lost work time avoiding the bully
  • 10% of employees decreased the amount of time they spent at work
  • 12% of employees changed jobs to avoid the bully

Are you being bullied at work? Has an employee come to you about a workplace bully? Learn  more about this topic via our webinar, Bullying in the Workplace.

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Safe Home Connections, a division of KidsTerrain, Inc. assists individuals with the option to age in place, that is, to live in one's home while having access to services and support as needs change. 

To learn more about Safe Home Connections services and support, visit our web site or Contact our Certified Aging-In Place Specialist for more information.

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