Workplace Bullying

Bullying is not just a problem confined to school classrooms and playgrounds. It is a pervasive issue in the workplace and employers are recognising that there are costs associated with ignoring or mishandling instances of bullying. The costs of bullying can be significant and include legal expenses, absenteeism, reduced productivity, reduced job satisfaction, increased employee turnover, and increased occurrences of disability leave. Workplace bullying not only affects the lives of those directly involved, but it also has a negative impact on an organisations culture, performance, and reputation. While statistics on the incidence of workplace bullying vary, one study found that 13% of U.S. employees report being bullied currently and 49% of workers report that they have been affected by workplace bullying, either being a target themselves or having witnessed abusive behaviour against a co-worker. [1] There’s significant research to support that the most common type of bullying is top-down bullying, where a superior bullies an employee. [2] The bully is often someone who is in a position of control who feels threatened by someone else’s skills, education, or talents, and may even be someone who is a long-standing company employee. Although managers and supervisors are the most common perpetrators of…