6 Subtle Signs of Workplace Bullying and What To Do About It

Signs of Workplace Bullying

If you’re gritting your teeth every time you come home because of workplace bullying, you’re not alone.

According to Forbes, workplace bullying affects about 75% of people.

Workplace bullies aren’t like the tyrants in your childhood who terrorized people at the playground. They are subtle. So how would you know if someone’s bullying you at work? More importantly, how would you cope with the office monster?

What is Workplace Bullying?

So how would you tell a colleague’s frustrated fist-banging apart from workplace bullying?

Workplace bullying is irrational behavior that a person directs at a group of co-workers. Note that a single incident cannot count as bullying because it could have resulted from stress. Therefore, the behavior is repetitive.

This behavior is also rampant. According to the Employment Law Alliance, about 45% of American workers have experienced workplace bullying.

Furthermore, it would threaten colleagues’ well-being and safety. Bullying makes coworkers feel too unmotivated and sick to come to work.

6 Signs of Workplace Bullying

So how would you know if you’re overly sensitive to a co-worker’s remarks, or if he’s a workplace bully? Here are some of the behaviors he’ll show if he or she is one. Note that they won’t necessarily shout out at you.

1. Belittling

First of all, a bully would belittle a co-worker’s ideas and gossip about his or her circumstances. He or she would undermine colleagues’ work in front of superiors.



2. Embarrassment

A workplace bully would shame co-workers in public. He or she would make put-down remarks about them.

3. Manipulation

Another tactic workplace bullies use to get their way is manipulation. They often use passive-aggressive behaviors to make others feel insecure or threatened. You would find them ignoring you. You’ll then give in to them because you feel upset. Conversely, they may dish out compliments so that their coworkers will become easily manipulated.

4. Lying or sabotage

Workplace bullies lie because they want to get rid of those whom they see as competition. They use lies to put their colleagues in a bad light.

5. Unreasonable behavior

Bullying bosses or colleagues would set tasks that are impossible to fulfill. They cause their coworkers to fail and perform poorly.

6. Unnecessary Competition

Finally, they would use make the workplace unnecessarily competitive. A bullying colleague will do this just to create an uncomfortable situation.

Tips for Managing Workplace Bullying

How would you deal with someone who insists on upsetting your day at work? Here are some suggestions for dealing with him or her.

First of all, don’t let your feelings get in the way. Bullies will play on your emotions to get you to do things their way.

It’s also essential that you do your best work. Taking long lunches or coming in to work at odd hours will give a bullying boss faults to find.

Also, build a network of supportive colleagues. Besides having people to discuss the bullying problem with, they’ll serve as a shield when the bully rains blow on you.

You should also keep records of the bully’s actions. You can use them to approach human resources with if the bully’s actions become extreme.

It also helps if you know about workplace bullying. Familiarize yourself with your rights. Knowing more allows you to protect yourself.

Finally, don’t expect the bully to mend his ways, at least not overnight. You can, however, manage the bullying behavior with a firm No.

Workplace bullying is not an easy issue to overcome, but you can take steps to keep the problem under control. Most importantly, stay upbeat if you’re the victim of a bully.

By Michelle L.


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