Workplace Bullying: Prevention Training is Essential to a Healthy Workplace

Category: Workplace Bullying
Posted: 08-20-2011 10:03 PM
Views: 1600
Synopsis:

Workplace bullying has been around for generations, however only just recently has the cost of this unfortunate tradition been quantified. Some experts estimate the cost of downtime and employee turnover as a result of bullying to run into the billions. In fact, most studies show that 50% of employees have either witnessed or been a victim of bullying at work.

Workplace bullying has been around for generations, however only just recently has the cost of this unfortunate tradition been quantified. Some experts estimate the cost of downtime and employee turnover as a result of bullying to run into the billions. In fact, most studies show that 50% of employees have either witnessed or been a victim of bullying at work.

Workplace bullying of any type is truly unacceptable. Psychologists have compared the effects of bullying on victims as similar to post-traumatic stress disorder. The stress of bullying manifests into real physical and mental health issues. It destroys creativity by robbing some of the brightest employees of a voice in the organization. It increases employee turnover - bullied employees are three times more likely to leave a job than non-bullied employees. Lastly, it spreads like wildfire through organizations - destroying them from within. Bullying is like a virus – it spreads exponentially when it’s allowed to flourish.  Bullying in the workplace prevention training is imperative in every workplace.

What is Workplace Bullying?

Bullying is hostile, aggressive or unreasonable behavior perpetrated against a co-worker. In general, bullying is a continuous activity. It occurs over time and involves a variety of tactics. However, even single instances of bullying are unacceptable.
Bullies generally bully for two reasons:

•    To embarrass and humiliate or
•    To expand their power and influence.

Bullying can be peer-to-peer or it can be perpetrated by managers or supervisors who take advantage of their positions of power. As a matter of fact, most studies show that 70-80% of workplace bullying is done by managers or supervisors. The power differential between a manager and subordinate employee makes it difficult for a bullied employee to speak up or report the activity.

Bullying can be tough to spot because workplace bullies sometimes work within the confines of organizational policies and rules. Their behaviors are subtle but also very damaging and real. The key to understanding bullying is "hostility”. Bullying behavior is hostile. Whether the behavior is overt, covert, subtle or demonstrative it is hostile in nature.

How Can You Stop Workplace Bullying? It's Simple.

  • Treat co-workers with respect
  • Treat co-workers fairly and equally
  • Speak up when you witness bullying

Any witness or victim of workplace bullying should report the conduct to management or human resources.  The best way to eliminate bullying in the workplace is to remember the "Golden Rule" - treat co- workers exactly like you would like to be treated - with dignity, respect, fairness and equality.
After all, all employees deserve a workplace where they can do their jobs to the best of their abilities – a workplace free of fear and full of respect.

Charlie Bentson King is a writer and producer of training videos including workplace bullying prevention videos for TrainingABC.   TrainingABC is the world's most comprehensive source for corporate training videos and DVDs.

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