At school, the bullies we know are those that would take away our lunch or push everybody around in the playground. Some would spread rumors about you or even have you do everything from homework to odd little jobs, such as getting drinks or snacks.
In the workplace, many bullies are not as obvious in their behaviors. A bully at work may even be very subtle about the bullying. It can come in various forms, in which co-workers may not even realize that they are being bullied at work, unless the situation happens repeatedly or results to the victim feeling belittled.
There are also instances where some co-workers become bullies at the workplace without them knowing it. The negative bullying behavior need not be as obvious as shouting at the other person or humiliating them in front of several employees. Adopting a domineering attitude at work and forcing everyone to do things your way, is a sign that you’re a bully or becoming one already.
This simple quiz is a helpful self-assessment tool for people to check whether they are or could be a possible contributor to workplace bullying. It is especially helpful for employees who are wondering whether some of their behaviors are bordering on being too controlling at work or if they are contributing to a positive working environment.
To take the quiz and find out the results, click here.
October is considered the National Bullying Prevention month in the U.S., wherein several anti-bullying programs and activities are scheduled to happen. Although the activities lean more towards bullying in schools, some of the messages behind the campaigns are also applicable for employees bullied at work or how it may eventually affect the emergence of bullies in the workplace. One campaign that has gained the support of celebrities and other people is Lizzie Velasquez’s call for a Safe Schools Improvement Act.
Lizzie Velasquez, a bully victim who suffers from a rare syndrome that prevents her from gaining weight, took inspiration from her heartbreaking experience after seeing herself as a subject of a Youtube video nearly 10 years ago that labelled her as the “World’s Ugliest Woman.” Today, she has become a motivational speaker, activist and a star in her own right. She was also the subject of a recent documentary titled “A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story,” which chronicled her life and her journey to get Congress to approve a Safe Schools Improvement Act.
Now, celebrities such as Chris Hemsworth, Sara Bareilles, Michelle Phan, Octavia Spencer, Katie Couric, Tori Kelly, Kacey Musgraves, Derek Hough, Dr. Oz and Zachary Levi have pledged in a video, that they are “with Lizzie.”
Hopefully with the Safe Schools Improvement Act, school officials and parents will take better notice of the bullying behavior of some children and address it early on. It would definitely help to limit the number of bullies entering the work place in the future.
To read more about Velasquez’s proposed Safe Schools Improvement Act and to watch her anti-bullying video on People, click here.
Given the rising incidents of bullying, celebrities are now joining various programs which promotes anti-bullying. One of the latest campaigns out today even had a few stars design shirts with motivation messages about spreading kindness instead of hatred and bullying prevention.
These stars included actress and dancer Alyson Stoner, “Every Witch Way” actress Paola Andino, figure skater and 2014 U.S. national champion Gracie Gold, actress Addison Riecke, singer and songwriter Rachel Platten, “Jane the Virgin” star Gina Rodriguez and more.
A total of 10 celebrities participated in the anti-bullying campaign, wherein these stars partnered with CustomInk in designing limited edition shirts which will be available for sale. What’s unique about the campaign is that it also has a charitable side to it, wherein proceeds from the shirt sales will be donated to PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center.
To learn more about the campaign and to see the shirt gallery, click here.
More and more cases of bullying are cropping up all over the world. One reported case came from Scotland, wherein crew members of a hit drama show, River City, said they were bullied and treated unfairly.
Bosses from BBC Scotland have launched an investigation on the reported workplace bullying, after one crew member was fired due to false accusations of swearing. There were also reports of the new management deciding to remove traditional morning and afternoon tea breaks, and demanded additional filming to be done during the previous break times. The BECTU union representing more than half of the River City crew are furious over the incidents and have even threatened to launch a strike action against the network’s unfair dismissal of the crew member and other unfair treatment claims.
The union even described the managing style of the new River City management as extremely aggressive.
To read more about the bullying case and responses from BBC Scotland on Daily Record, click here.
A recent bullying case presented to the Fair Work Commission involving two employees and a property manager, had the Commission issue an order for both parties to avoid each other at work. The two employees filed separate applications with the Commission about an alleged workplace bullying incident involving the same property manager. The two employees claimed that the bully manager used physical intimidation, belittled the employees, yelled at and used inappropriate language at the work place, among others.
The incident was previously raised to the employer of these bullying victims and the property manager, which reportedly resulted to the manager’s resignation. However, the bully manager was employed at a related company that operated in a different work location. Despite the distance, the Fair Work Commission found that there is a probability that these three may meet or have future interactions. This prompted the Commission to mandate the bully manager not to interact with the two employees or access their profiles, including barring the property manager from entering the workplace while the two employees are at work. The same order was given to the bullying victims. The Commission also said the order will remain in force for 2 years.
The Commission’s mandate may seem a little harsh or even funny to some, but for victims of workplace bullies, this gives them added protection and comfort in knowing that they won’t experience further bullying from the manager. It also allows them to feel more secure in the work place after being subjected to such a negative working environment.
To read more about the case, as well as other mandates the Commission ordered the company to do, click here.
It probably confuses some people when they hear about adult bullying. Often time’s people believe that bullying only exists in junior high hallways. Bullying can happen between people of any age and in any situation. Bullying occurs anytime someone tries to intimidate, altercate or belittle. Physical violence is not necessarily the only kind of bullying. Have you ever been in a room and said something you believed only to have someone else in the room chastise you and make a mockery of you? That is bullying.
We’ve all been a part of bullying in one form or another and we can all work to make it end. One of the first steps we can take to end bullying is to end faceless hate speech. By that I mean we must better handle ourselves online, rather it be in an email or in a comments section. Some of the nastiest forms bullying can be found in the comments section on any given Internet article. Reading through these comments might lead some people to conclude that these cyber bullies are all just teenagers or people with no lives, but often the people writing these comments are actually adults who have hatred toward people who’s beliefs are different than their own. They can even be the people we work around.
How do we stop this? The best we have to offer is our own examples. We have to show discretion in what we choose to say and what opinions we express online as much as in our actual lives. Just because we are behind the screen of a computer or mobile device doesn’t take away our responsibility to ensure that we all have a safe place in which to work. Next time you see a comment section that has turned to hate speech just take a step back and remember that commenting back will not help the matter. Instead use it as a chance to enhance your own life by treating others with as much respect as you would expect in return. The best way to stop bullying is to reduce the number of them, and you can do that by making sure you always treat your co-workers with respect.