Topic of the Week Workplace Bullying
Bullying isn’t one of those things that ends in grade school. Surveys show that almost 20% of adults say that they have experienced bullying in the workplace, and almost another 20% say that they know someone else who has. Verbal, emotional, or physical workplace bullying can be just as harmful as the bullying that was a common experience for many children; however, with the advancement of technology, workplace bullying, like regular bullying, can also be done electronically through email or social media.
1. What is workplace bullying?
Workplace bullying typically involves continuous or repeated malicious behavior such as deliberate insults, threats, demeaning comments, constant criticism, overbearing supervision, and profane outburst. It may also include blatant exclusion, being overworked, or simply not communicating with colleagues.
More subtle forms of bullying can include withholding or supplying incorrect work-related information, sabotaging projects, passive-aggressive behavior, blocking promotions, providing unclear or contradictory instructions, or requesting unnecessary or tedious work.
2. What does a respectful workplace environment look like?
As an employee, you should be treated with dignity and respect. Employees must also contribute to creating a respectful workplace environment.
In a respectful workplace, employees and employers communicate openly and fairly with one another, without harassment or discrimination, and attempt to prevent a hostile work environment. There is, however, a fine line between workplace bullying and tough management. Therefore, while evaluating your workplace environment, it is best to keep in mind that all unfavorable actions may not cross the line into workplace bullying. It is enough for your boss or other employers to simply be hard in you or unkind.
3. What is the difference between bullying and harassment?
Bullying and harassment are sometimes used as synonyms and treated was words that mean the same thing. It is true that both words are similar and involve intentional actions or words that harm another person, it is also true that there is an important difference is the definitions.
When bullying is directed as a specific type of person or a protected class of people, then it is called harassment. Additionally, they're also some violent acts of bullying that qualify as criminal harassment.