It’s important to remember that all work experiences are not always positive, but that doesn’t necessarily mean bullying has occurred. Employers do have the right to demote, discipline, transfer, counsel or terminate employees when warranted.
Employment conditions along with organizational commitment and ethical climate can by design or inadvertently create an environment in which bullying occurs, or is allowed to flourish in the workplace along with the serious effects and consequences these behaviors pose to individuals. (Bond, Dollard & Tuckey, 2010; Workplace Bullying Institute, 2011).
Bullying in the workplace happens for a number of reasons including wide spread ignorance of the problem. Educating people is key to ending it, if we don’t know about it we can’t get rid of it.
Workplace bullying persists partly because people in authority fail to act either because of ignorance of the problem or their unwitting or active participation in it.
Employees under stress may turn to bullying to relieve their stress, or vent frustrations.
There is no system of reporting or protection for victims or observers.
It is not illegal in the United States or most other countries.
Observers who fail to act when it happens in their presences are actually contributing to the problem.
Again, there are no laws in the U.S. against bullying leaving the victim no recourse to stop it without the cooperation of management.
workplace bullying is grossly underestimated, and highly underreported, due to lack of workplace support, or anti-bullying rules and regulations. It is often made worse when victims or observers attempt to fight back especially if the bully is a manager or the manager is in collusion with the bully.
Although many larger and some small companies have rules or codes of conduct that may cover workplace bullying because employers rarely see bullying as a serious problem they fail to enforce their own rules.
Sacrificing one’s mental and physical health to keep a paycheck is not worth it.
75% of victims end the bullying by leaving
Accepting bullying behavior or allowing it to cause one to terminate their own employment does not resolve the larger issue. It likely only results in a new target.
Namie, Gary and Ruth (2000)
Lack of anti-bullying policies work to allow the behavior to continue without consequences to the bully. If a bully finds that there is no penalty for their behavior it usually escalates causing more damage to the victim and organization.
These are a few of the things that motivate a bully, there are many others.
Most bullying is intentional, three types of bully are identified as destructive narcissistic, psychopathic, and accidental (Stoupe, 2007). The destructive bully is usually a corporate climber and may be unaware that their behavior is destructive to those around them because they are hyper focused on moving up, that is not to say they care about their coworkers they are just oblivious to what their behavior is doing to them. The second type, the psychopath bullies for enjoyment pure and simple. The accidental bully is surprised at being labeled a bully, and may voluntarily seek help for their behavior.
Presented by Group E:
Charlotte Baker, Janice Battinelli, Laycee Gaul,
Crystal Haines, Carlyle Morel, Cladise
Slaughter, Ashley Teyechea, & David Woods
Instructor: Professor Ginger Devine
What is workplace bullying?
How does workplace bullying occur?
What motivates the bully?
What types of people are at risk for becoming targeted?
What are its effects on victims, observers, & businesses?
What can be done about it?
How can social change agents help combat the problem?
Too complex to have a universal
Repeated stress inducing
actions toward another
Passive, active, overt, or covert
actions that intimidate, degrade,
humiliate, or undermine
Creates feeling of
Spreading malicious rumors, gossiping
Undermining or intentionally impeding
Blame or unwarranted criticism without
Exclusion, social isolation
Excessive monitoring, micromanaging,
Blocking training, leave or promotion
A strict supervisor
Consequences for poor work
Warranted demotion, discipline,
counseling, or termination
Ignorance of the issue
through action or
inaction of management
taking frustrations out
No system of reporting
or protection for victims
Lack of recognition and
How Do Targets Handle Bullying?
Targets accept the bullying
behavior as part of employment
Victims fear retribution or losing
position for making waves
75% of victims end bullying
behavior only by leaving the
Bullies work to
systematically wear the
target down to:
Ensure own job
Further own career
Exert or gain a sense
Instill fear in the
target or observers
Personal prejudices harbored against others
Prevent advancement opportunities for target
Create a scapegoat for workplace stressors such as
company downsizing, unreasonable work
demands or work overload
Create social isolation for target
managers and supervisors
who bully subordinates
peers who bully co-workers
in similar job positions
workers who bully
supervisors or managers
Perceived as threat to job
security or advancement
relationships or role
High risk job sectors or
level of employment
Viewed as weak or easy to
Race, culture, ethnicity,
The following chart denotes the percentages of:
men bullying men
women bullying women,
men bullying women
women bullying men
Effects of Bullying on the Victim
Stress & job dissatisfaction
Under 1 month
Over one year
50% of surveyed individuals
suicide; 20% later succeeded
Victims of bullying are three
times more likely to
experience depression than
the average individual
The impact of bullying on
victims has been found to
correlate with the diagnostic
criteria of Post-Traumatic
Stress Disorder and anxiety
effects on the target!
“Bystander effect" - the idea that observers stand by,
unwilling to assist someone in need of help
• 12% of observers report that they have witnessed
• Bystanders fear that the workplace bully will turn on
In order for bystanders to feel comfortable enough to
intervene, they need to know they can do something
about it. Witnesses need to feel empowered and
supported when they report bullying behavior.
Fear of becoming targeted
causes observers to join
forces with the bully,
resulting in mobbing.
“Workplace mobbing” is
an issue in which a group
of people gang up on a
target without retribution
for their actions.
Billions of dollars lost
worldwide each year
High employee turnover
Low job satisfaction
Use of work computers &
behavior into cyberspace,
Improved staff satisfaction, retention
Enhanced reputation for the business
Creates a culture of professionals, role models
Improves work safety, quality
Greater staff willingness to report
Reduced liability, risk management
A more civil, productive, desirable workplace
as a good place
Psychologically healthy workplaces have lower
turnover, less stress & higher job satisfaction
Sources: American Psychological Association, U.S. Dept. of Labor
Bureau of labor statistics, 2009
NEVER become a bully under any circumstances
Recognize when you are being bullied, realize it is
not your fault
Alert management immediately
Ask witnesses to testify that they observed bullying
Provide conferences or workshops to educate
Create & enforce a zero tolerance anti-bullying
Determine & enforce possible courses of action
for bullying behaviors
Promote & endorse anti-bullying legislation
Employers must establish and enforce strict guidelines
Have employees submit a signed statement
regarding commitment to abide by conduct rules
Have focus groups to “conduct surveys” to be
Three levels of intervention for bullies, victims,
Informal Intervention: conduct interviews to discuss
events, listen to responses, get perspectives of all
Awareness Intervention: Compilation and divulge
complaints from data in a supportive manner to raise
Authority Intervention: specify behaviors that need
improvement, give timeline to improve behavior
Employers can support victims, observers,
and bullies by:
Offering healthcare support, evaluation,
treatment plans & wellness programs
Providing training on professional behavior
Participating in the recovery of those who
experienced or witnessed disruptive bullying
Recognize and report Workplace bullying when it
Help educate others and create awareness
Volunteer to help the State Coordinators enact the
Healthy Workplace Bill
Become a citizen lobbyist or state coordinator
Assist employers in creating a anti-bullying policy
Endorse the Healthy Workplace Bill:
Recent recognition of the problem and
increasing awareness are improving the future
outlook of this issue.
Companies worldwide are establishing annual
training courses and codes of conduct regarding
A safe and comfortable work environment where all
employees feel secure and able to be productive is the
5-10 years will likely not see the eradication of this
issue, however, each individual commitment can
contribute to overall social change
“As a victim who was fired for being a victim, I am
absolutely incensed at the injustice and inhumanity of
executives and managers who let this continue!
As a victim who has suffered many of the debilitating
symptoms of bullying, I am sickened by the
hypocrisy of company "codes of ethics and conduct".
Signed, a victim
Workplace bullying is a serious, yet preventable,
problem that results in harmful effects victims,
witnesses and businesses alike
There are currently few laws against workplace
bullying but companies and individuals choosing
to take a stand can have a huge impact and work
toward its elimination
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