Interview on WUSA9 Workplace bullying in higher education

Posted by on Jan 4, 2013 in bullying, cyberbullying, sexual harassment

  Interview on WUSA9 Workplace bullying in higher education Interview on WUSA9 Workplace bullying in higher education Interview on WUSA9 Workplace bullying in higher education     By Thomas James   Bullying among children and teens in schools receive extra attention these days, but experts say bullying takes place in other times in our lives. In fact, workplace bullying is happening at an alarming rate. Especially in higher education. Leah P. Hollis, Ed.D., Author of the book “Bully In The Ivory Tower” says 62 percent of people who work in higher education have experienced bullying versus 45 percent of the general population. Dr. Hollis says, “I surveyed 175 schools and what I found in the return was that a number of people, especially in the entry levels and the middle management were talking about how they were the target of bullying either from the boss or the organization in general. 9 News Now’s Anita Brikman interviews Dr. Hollis about her survey and why workplace bullying is more prevalent in higher education than in other professions: Anita: “What’s going on? Why at college and universities?” Dr. Hollis: “What’s interesting is at a college or university we are all trained to be experts in our field to go out and do this wonderful research and create excellent knowledge. It also is an isolating experience so now when you have to manage people or collaborate or have team building you’ve already been protected by tenure perhaps or at least in a culture that supports being isolated and also supports a pretty big ego. So that doesn’t always make for the best management skills.” Anita: “So in these case studies, who was saying they are being bullied? Younger educators bullied by tenured folks?” Dr. Hollis: “Typically it was somebody at the entry level, your assistant director, it might have even been the director or just the manager of the department. Folks who are reporting up-line to Vice Presidents, Provosts, or even the Presidents. So bullying has to do with power and those with the least amount of power are the ones on the receiving end of bullying.” To see the entire interview, including how workplace bullying in higher education affects students and how can we deal with workplace bullying across the board, click here....

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Don’t Be Afraid of the Office Bully Monster

Posted by on Nov 10, 2012 in bullying, cyberbullying, Discrimination

Don’t Be Afraid of the Office Bully Monster Don’t Be Afraid of the Office Bully Monster Don’t Be Afraid of the Office Bully Monster Originally posted on JENNINGS WIRE   We are entering that cherished time of they year… Halloween moving through Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years is a time where office parties and progressively bad behavior seem to be overlooked underneath the haze of holiday cheer. There is nothing like spiked apple cider, rum cake and that mysterious red punch at the party to make colleague and supervisor overlook their better senses. Employees who are new to their career might find this to be an invitation to join in the “reindeer games,” without considering the consequences when they sober up the next day.  Take a page from Lance, the new assistant director who got a bit comfortable with his boss at a party. With the apple bob at lunch and spicy cider mixture that somehow got spiked, the office staff was at ease in an environment that was typically tense and rigid.  Lance was thrilled with the holiday cheer as his first year under his boss, Artie, was less than something to celebrate.  Lance noticed that the rest of the staff was at ease too, maybe this was the end to the yelling and manipulative behavior that had been the norm for his department.  Maybe Lance could finally relax. Artie and Lance had a chance to chat over the apple cider. Artie had let his hair down, discussed his own insecurities with upper management and with a buzz, confided in Lance about fears of losing respect at the top.  Lance felt comfortable and joined in, sharing his own insecurities with his low grade point average in college, feeling unaccomplished with his quest of grad school, and his lack luster relationship with on-again-off-again girlfriend.  For about 90 minutes, though induced by alcohol, they were civil human beings for a change.  As the office party came to an end, the staff took their last nibbles at cookies and caramel corn, then returned to a relatively productive afternoon on the job.  All seemed well. The next day, Lance reported to work to find that things were “back to normal.”  No one made eye contact with each other.  There was a muffled tirade coming from Artie’s office. As Lance settled in, his cube mate remarked, “ the ogre is back…!” Artie quickly came around the corner and berated Lance for being 15 minutes late.  He reminded Lance that “this is why he couldn’t make the cut in grad school…” and that “… no woman would stick with him given his tardiness..”  Lance was demoralized.  All the things he had shared over spiced cider was coming back to haunt him publically.  He was powerless to respond, and saw no relief from the terror which returned to the office. Lance was caught in what...

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CONGRATULATIONS: Power women, Leah Hollis

Posted by on Sep 29, 2012 in bullying, cyberbullying, Discrimination, Diversity Training

CONGRATULATIONS Power Women: Leah Hollis CONGRATULATIONS Power Women: Leah Hollis CONGRATULATIONS Power Women: Leah Hollis   Feature in Mainline TODAY, OCTOBER 2012 Twenty-one of the Main Line’s most successful and influential women share their secrets to success. BY TARA BEHAN “I think you should be treated fairly at work,” says East Fallowfield Township’s Leah Hollis. “You shouldn’t be treated differently because of your gender, race or religion.” These days, that should be a given. It’s not. As founder and president of the Patricia Berkly LLC Group, Hollis has dedicated her career to preventing workplace discrimination. She’s even written books about it. Her first, Unequal Opportunity: Fired Without Cause? Filing with the EEOC, came out last year, and her second, Bully in the Ivory Tower, is due this fall. Advocacy runs in Hollis’ family. Her mom was president of the NAACP in central Pennsylvania, and both parents are civil-rights champions. Once a diversity trainer at Northeastern University, Hollis is hired by companies throughout the country to offer her expertise. She also has an online training series viewed by employees across the country. “You essentially spend more time at work than you do at home with your family on a daily basis,” she says. “So I believe that...

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Reflection on the Rutgers bullying case

Posted by on Sep 5, 2012 in bullying, cyberbullying, Discrimination

Reflection on the Rutgers bullying case Reflection on the Rutgers bullying case Reflection on the Rutgers bullying case By Dr. Leah Hollis, author of Unequal Opportunity: Fired without cause? Filing with the EEOC… As a Rutgers alumna I was asked today “what do you think of the sentencing of Dhuran Ravi for the cyber bullying incident of Tyler Clementi?”    Ravi was originally facing up to 10 years in jail for a cyber bullying incident that led to Tyler Clementi  committing suicide.  Instead, Ravi faces 30 days in jail and a $10,000 fine. Was the sentence too light? Should the conviction be appealed?  Is the isolation faced by Ravi the last 20 months already sufficient?  Maybe some of the other questions we should ask, where do kids learn this behavior?  Who teachers civility?  How does this behavior continue to manifest as we supposedly grow up and into careers? I had to pause. I am a 20 plus year veteran of student services, and worked in academic affairs and students affairs.  I have seen the best and worst of student behavior at some of the most elite campuses.  The antics of any dorm life can shame unwitting bystanders.  In this case however, a young man is dead, and the lives of the three students, (remember the hall mate Molly Wei who hosted the webcam) are irrevocably changed.  Therefore I initially say the obvious, no one is a winner.   Our society is chocked full of competitive and negative behaviors where decency is the least of concerns.  We learn competition and incivility from the school play yard when someone  was berated for being  weaker, smaller, younger or just different than the mainstream. Remember the days were students would race at the school bell to see who won the latest skirmish. The battle cry  FIGHT FIGHT?!? would bring a small troop of prepubescent spectators to witness the latest bullying battle. On a smaller scale, it was nothing for kids to punch, kick and push others, regardless of gender.   What we learned in kindergarten is often carried through our school years and college. Further, such behavior moves with us into middle age and our professional lives.  And consistent with the current behaviors regarding bullying,  people at one time or another tend to be on both the giving and receiving end of this behavior.   As the last few years of media coverage have confirmed that  bullying affects all age groups.  Youngsters in grade school and high school are facing bullying; as a result several states have anti bullying state wide policies.  New Jersey has one of the strictest anti bullying school policies in the nation.  On the heels of the Tyler Clementi tragedy, Tyler Clementi Higher Education Anti-Harassment Act of 2011 was introduced in Congress to protect university students from harassment and bullying.  . In the face of pervasive workplace bullying, 18 states have...

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Workplace bullying… beyond child’splay

Posted by on Aug 23, 2012 in bullying, cyberbullying

  Workplace Bullying… beyond child’s play By Dr. Leah Hollis, author of Unequal Opportunity: Fired without cause? Filing with the EEOC… Our news is chocked full of stories retelling instances of bullying that leads to teen suicide.  A bully perceives the targets as smaller, weaker or different from the dominant group who welds its power at the expense of others. Once being facing a bully was almost a rite of passage.  A target of a bully was expected to stand up and fight back.  Fabled stories like the Karate Kid or Cinderella show how many of us like the underdog and cheer for him or her to prevail against  the bully. However, when the fairy tale is over, the effects of a bully have far reaching implications.  The things we learn in grade school carry through to college and the workplace.  Therefore, workplace bullying is a rising trend feeding the all-time record high EEOC complaints for 2011.   Bullying as a form of harassment is a power play over subordinates and is a growing threat to American corporations.  Toxic work environments create turnover, reduced productivity and costly legal defense if the target pursues a claim. We have all worked with that obnoxious personality who tells off color jokes has emotional fits, or simply pushes his or her way through meetings and procedures with little care for the staff.  These behaviors, once considered what we endure as a day in the life of work, can now lead a bully and his organization straight to court.  Unless the person being bullied is outside one of the Title VII protected classes, the person on the receiving end of bullying may have a claim of harassment and discrimination on the basis of gender, race, ethnicity pregnancy or religion. In addition, there are millions of people are bullied within class, woman bullying woman, or bullying within the same race.  Regardless of race, creed or color, harassment harms employee morale and engagement.  Bullying, regardless of who is the target, hurts the bottom line.   In any case, workplace bullying is particularly destructive to individuals and organizations.  Namie and Naime (2009) estimate that workplace bullying costs organizations over 64 billion dollars (yes with a B) a year. When one tabulates the cost of turnover, the cost of disengaged employees and even the cost of health care related to a toxic workplace, leaders and managers can ill afford to ignore this bullish trend in the workplace. The problem is so severe that over 21 states have introduced Healthy Workplace Legislation to attempt to stem the problem of runaway bullying behavior. On April 30, several workers and advocacy groups urged the New York legislature to pass a Healthy Workplace Bill. Many victims of workplace bullying testified that they feared for their jobs if they did not succumb to the harassment of a boss. Others cried as they retold stories...

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Definition of Bullying

Posted by on Apr 14, 2012 in bullying, cyberbullying, Discrimination, Diversity Training, diversity training consultants, sexual harassment

Definition of Bullying Definition of bullying Definition of bullying   Definition of Bullying in the workplace includes: harassing, belittling, insulting behavior, especially if enduring such becomes a condition of maintaining a job. What is the definition of bullying as it applies to the workplace?  The definition of bullying includes harassment, discrimination, belittling and insulting comments… constantly. The definition of bullying is similar to the definition of harassment.  However, the definition of bullying includes ALL people, regardless of race, class or gender.  The definition of bullying also relates to a pervasive behavior, often at the hands of the boss or supervisor.  The definition of bullying should be considered by leadership.  Once the definition of bullying is taken serious, then quarterly training and support for supervisors can eradicate behavior under the definition of bullying. The definition of bullying should also include the cost of bullying. The definition of bullying should be something that human resources managers along with supervisors.  The definition of bullying should be something the executives consider.  Once the definition of bullying is understood, and the effects of bullying are understood, those who understand the definition of bullying understand that it costs organizations millions of dollars to harbor a bully.  The definition of bullying can lead to health problems; the definition of bullying can create a toxic work environment.  The definition of bullying and those behaviors that comprise the definition of bullying erode an organization and undermine productivity. Those who understand the definition of bullying also understand that the effects of bullying of similar to the stress of those who are subject to sexual...

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