Everybody should have some tips to deal with bullying in the workplace, just in case. No one should ever have to deal with bullying, let alone in your own workplace. That statement should hold true in this day in age. However, that is not always the case. As adults, we take our learned behaviors and continue them on in our daily lives. Unfortunately, that means that bullies continue to exist in real-life situations, such as work.
Bullying is a nightmare for the workplace environment. It can suck the work out of people so to speak. Good employees can be beaten down and feel less worthy due to a bully situation.
Bullies consist of people who belittle, mock, make fun of others and sabotage others. Does this sound familiar to you at work? If it does, then you are dealing with a bully in the workplace. Below are some tips to deal with bullying in the workplace.
Table of contents:
- 1. Confront the Person about the Situation
- 2. Talk with a Supervisor
- 3. Talk with Human Resources
- 4. Put Positive Reinforcements in the Workplace
- 5. Foster an Environment for Reporting
1 Confront the Person about the Situation
Confronting the person is one of the first tips to deal with bullying in the workplace that you can try. You never want to talk about this person behind their back or go above their head right away. That could make things worse. Learning to stick up for yourself and going to that person directly is much more efficient. Tell the person what is going on and how it is making you feel. Do not accuse them of bullying, but tell them what you have been experiencing. Example: “Karen, I feel bad when you mock me in front of others in our meetings”. This would let Karen know that she might be thinking that mocking others is funny, but it does hurt your feelings. If you do not feel comfortable with this, maybe the next couple steps will help you out.
2 Talk with a Supervisor
If the above suggestion does not work, it is time to discuss options with your supervisor. Letting your supervisor know what is going on is key because they have the power to do something. The bully might not take your conversation seriously, or not see the severity of their actions. A supervisor talking with them about their performance will have more power behind it. Ask the supervisor if there is a training or counseling that the bully could go to to help teach them better workplace etiquette.
3 Talk with Human Resources
Putting in an official report about the person might be the next step needed. This will ensure that the bully has a record that the supervisors and human resources officers can look back on to see what their offenses are. If this person stops bullying you, it does not mean they might not be bullying someone else.
4 Put Positive Reinforcements in the Workplace
As a supervisor, it is important to be putting positive reinforcements into the workplace. These reinforcements really help to weed out some of the bullies and their behaviors. Create incentives for people who treat others nicely. People could nominate others in the office that go above and beyond to help others. Create a recognition system in the workplace that will allow the good employees to shine in front of others.
5 Foster an Environment for Reporting
Encourage others to come forward to speak about their experiences. Make a policy that reflects that any reporting cannot be used against that reporter. Make sure that if the person wants to stay anonymous, that they do. Have an open door policy that allows employees to feel comfortable reporting what they are experiencing without feeling as if they are bothering anyone.
Remember that bullying does not just exist in schools. Bullying is a problem, but if you deal with the problem appropriately, it does not have to ruin a workplace environment.
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