4 ways to deal with workplace bullying

4 ways to deal with workplace bullying

Productivity | Career | Motivation | Work Colleagues

Nia Bennett | Feb, 24 2020

Being bullied at work is a serious issue and it needs to be addressed immediately to avoid severe damage to a person’s mental wellbeing and productivity at work.

The cause of the problem is that most people fail to realise when they are being bullied. To understand this, just ask yourself if you are constantly insulted, criticised, had your self-esteem broken or feel complete dread while working with a co-worker or a manager for all of the above reasons, then chances are you are among the 1.5 million young people in England who have been bullied at work.

Workplace bullying is growing all over the world. Several studies have proven that being bullied has a direct effect on a person’s mental health and could lead to depression. 

Tips to fight a bully and retain confidence

To overcome bullying you need to be armed with strength and self-belief that no matter what happens or what the bully makes you feel - it is not your fault and you do not have to put up with it.

1. Do not doubt yourself and your capability

Bullies come in all shapes and sizes. Some can be outright aggressive but others can be sly or deceptive. Some might be charming around others but when they are with you, they might resort to playing mind games by undermining your work.  

The point is you no matter how desperate you are to stay in the job, you should never have to put up with a bully. Never let anyone talk down to you or disrespect you regardless of their stature. Everybody is worthy of respect and businesses can only thrive by nurturing talent, not by breaking their morale. 

To continue working hard and performing your best and resist from making yourself feel unworthy just because someone says so.

2. Keep a diary

If you have been going through a series of incidents, then it is best to keep a log or diary of every incident, in case the problem gets serious. 

Make notes of dates, times and details of the incident. If another employee has witnessed you being bullied, then use their testimonial or use them as an alibi when approaching Human Resources.

If you have received any derogatory email or text, keep them. Every piece of evidence can be used as proof to make your case stronger and it will prevent the bully from continuing his/her toxic behaviour. 

Although it is best to confront the behaviour either with HR or the bully itself, having evidence of the incident will help you in case you decide to press charges, especially if your bully threatens to terminate your employment.

3. Be firm with the bully

Confrontation is not easy, especially if your bully is manipulative or aggressive. 

Regardless of what your bully says, make an attempt to schedule a meeting and have an honest conversation about how they make you feel.

If they lose their cool or swear at you - pinpoint it calmly and tell them this is not acceptable behaviour. Let them know that you are open to criticism but they cannot insult you.

The key here is to make an attempt to have a conversation and finding a resolution but if they continue to overpower you, then let them know you will not put up with it and leave the room.

4. Stay informed

It is important to talk to someone, maybe a colleague you trust or someone senior about what is happening. It is good to get some clarity and read about your rights as an employee.

No matter what happens, do not ever let your performance suffer at work. 

It is best to tackle the problem head-on before it seeps into your mind and makes you question your own credibility.

Stay strong, confident and focus on doing your best at work. If the abuse is too verbal, instantly report it to HR.