Topic of the Week Addressing Workplace Bullying and Cultivating a Respectful Workplace
Workplace bullying involves continuous or repeated malicious behavior such as deliberate insults, threats, demeaning comments, constant criticism, overbearing supervision, and profane outbursts. More subtle forms of bullying can include withholding or supplying incorrect work-related information, sabotaging projects, passive-aggressive behavior, blocking promotions, providing unclear or contradictory instructions, or requesting unnecessary or tedious work.
As an employee, you should be treated with dignity and respect. Employees must also contribute to creating a respectful workplace environment. In a respectful workplace, employees and employers communicate openly and fairly with one another, without harassment or discrimination, and attempt to prevent a hostile work environment. There is, however, a fine line between workplace bullying and tough management. Therefore, while evaluating your workplace environment, it is best to keep in mind that all unfavorable actions may not cross the line into workplace bullying. It is enough for your boss or other employers to simply be hard in you or unkind.
1. What is the difference between bullying and harassment?
Bullying and harassment
are sometimes used as synonyms and treated was words that mean the same thing. It is true that both words are similar and involve intentional actions or words that harm another person, it is also true that there is an important difference is the definitions.
When bullying is directed as a specific type of person or a protected class of people, then it is called harassment. Additionally, there also some violent acts of bullying that qualify as criminal harassment.
2. How can an employer protect employees from bullying in the workplace?
To discourage and eliminate bullying, it is necessary that direction comes from the top. The most effective strategy employers can pursue is to treat bullying as though it is already illegal. Create a workplace culture wherein bullying is not tolerated.